Today marks the end of the Welsh government’s consultation on Organ Donation – in which it proposes a system of presumed consent.
If the government has enough support for its scheme, a bill will be passed next year paving the way for the first presumed-consent system of its kind in the UK.
The consultation: “Proposals for Legislation on Organ and Tissue Donation,” was launched in November 2011 and includes an opt-out system for organ donation.
The government’s objective was to introduce a ‘soft’ opt-out system in Wales to increase the number of organ and tissue donors in Wales. If passed it would mean that everyone’s organs in Wales would be available for donation after death, unless they have opted out and families would lose the legal right to stop deceased relatives’ organs being taken for transplant. However, Health Minister Lesley Griffiths has said she cannot imagine a situation where doctors would act without a family's permission.
The consultation ends at midnight tonight and the findings of the consultation are likely to be published within a month. The bill would then be introduced this year and passed in 2013 with the new system due to start in 2015 allowing time for a public information campaign.