How to Opt Out or In of Organ Donation Using the NHS App or Online
On this page you can find out about:
how the law changed in England in May 2020 to assume most people are opted-in to organ donation
stories about organ donation
videos about organ donation
how to opt-out of organ donation using the NHS App, or online
where to find out more about organ donation
How English Law changed to Opt-In in May 2020
On 20 May 2020, the law around organ donation in England was changed to allow more people to save more lives.
Now that the law has changed, it will be considered that you agree to become an organ donor when you die, if:
you are over 18;
you have not opted out;
you are not in an excluded group.
You still have a choice whether you want to become an organ donor, and can register or amend your decision at any time.
Does this mean my organs will just be taken? No - your family will be consulted before any action is taken, make sure your family know your wishes.
For more in-depth information and an FAQ visit: https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/uk-laws/organ-donation-law-in-england/
Stories about Organ Donation - An Airdrie father of five was given a ‘second chance’
An Airdrie father of five was given a ‘second chance’ at growing his family after a life-saving kidney transplant in June 2005. Malcolm Armstrong, 44, was diagnosed with Goodpasture’s Syndrome aged 27 in 2003, a condition that led to his kidneys failing and him starting dialysis – treatment that continued for two years. Already dad to daughter Emily, the medication Malcolm was on during dialysis made him sterile, meaning family plans had to be put on hold. However after the successful transplant, the Police family liaison officer then went on to welcome Daniel, 13, Rosie, 12, Eve, 10, and Ben, 9, to the world with wife Michelle.
Malcolm said: “If it wasn’t for the decision made by my donor and their family, I wouldn’t be here, or have a future with my wife and kids. Simple as that. I think it’s one of the most important things in society. If your organs can be used by someone else when you die then why not give them that second chance. It’s the biggest gift you can give someone and it has a huge ripple effect on their whole life, letting family, friends and work life go back to normal. Of course, having five kids comes with its challenges, but I love the life we have and absolutely wouldn’t change it for the world.”
Speaking about the importance of sharing your organ donation decision, Malcolm said: “I can appreciate people might have concerns about the new opt-out system, but I think it’s the best way forward. You also need to remember to make sure your loved ones know your intentions to be an organ donor because when someone dies, those around you are at their most vulnerable. That vital conversation with your family is what makes sure somebody else can benefit. When it comes down to it it’s not about a big heroic, selfless act, it’s just about hoping you can do the right thing by somebody.”
Videos about organ donation
Flick through the videos here to:
understand the opt-in opt-out changes to English law
hear some more stories about organ donation
hear some religious views on organ donation
learn how to manage your opt-in opt-out preferences
tips for starting a conversation about organ donation with your family