Call to action on organ donation

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The European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis, says increased efforts are needed to increase organ donation and transplantation across Europe.

While the latest figures show a 14 per cent increase in organ transplants between 2010 and 2015 in the European Union (EU), 16 patients die every day waiting for organ transplantation.

Commissioner Andriukaitis said that progress has been made in donation and transplantation in recent years through the 2010 EU Directive on quality and safety standards for organs for transplantation and the parallel action plan to support the sharing of experiences and knowledge between EU countries. The Commissioner said he is keen to build on this and harness the potential of the new European Reference Networks (ERNs), which link healthcare professionals across Europe.

“While all the progress made in the past decades is welcome, we cannot be complacent or pretend that our achievements to date are sufficient. As long as thousands of patients across the EU remain on transplant waiting lists, all of us – policy makers, competent authorities, healthcare providers, health professionals, patients and researchers alike, need to redouble our efforts and work together to transform these bold initiatives into real and lasting success,” he said.