Organ Donation and Transplant Ireland (ODTI) was established to provide governance, integration and leadership for Organ Donation and Transplantation in Ireland. The Office is dedicated to saving and improving lives by improving organ donation rates in Ireland. ODTI is responsible for the delivery of the National Organ Procurement Service for Ireland and also maintains the Living donor register in accordance with data protection legislation.
Organ transplantation takes place in three national transplant centres. Beaumont hospital provides kidney transplantation and is the national centre for living kidney organ donation. Mater hospital provides heart and lung transplantation. St Vincent’s hospital provides liver and pancreas transplantation. Children are referred to the UK for heart, lung and liver transplants.
Organ donation is where a person offers their organs for transplant. Their organs are given to someone who has damaged organs that need to be replaced. An organ transplant may save a person’s life, or it may significantly improve their health and quality of life. Organs that can be donated in Ireland are: heart, lungs, liver, pancreas and kidneys.
Most donations come from people who have died however; it is possible for living people to donate certain organs. By offering a kidney, lobe of a lung, portion of the liver, pancreas, or intestine, living donors offer their loved one or friend an alternative to waiting on the national transplant waiting list for an organ from a deceased donor.
Living organ donation dates back to 1954, when a kidney from one twin was successfully transplanted into his identical brother. Today, the number of living organ donors is more than 6,000 per year and one in four of these donors are not biologically related to the recipient.
Royal London has just recently introduced a unique feature to its Specified Illness Cover policies called Donor Cover. The Donor Cover section of the policy will pay out a single payment of €2,500 to a life assured where that person donates any of the following to a family member:
- Portion of Liver
- Portion of Lung
- Bone Marrow Transplant
Another good reason to consider carrying an organ donor card.