London, July 11 (IANS) The number of persons still alive in Britain after receiving transplanted organs has exceeded 50,000 for the first time, data revealed on Tuesday.
NHS Blood and Transplant in its annual report for 2017 said that 36,300 persons received transplanted kidneys, 9,800 had liver transplants, and 3,900 heart or lung transplants. Almost 2,000 received transplanted pancreas and 1,000 transplanted intestines.
The agency said the number of persons on the NHS Organ Donor Register has also reached a record number 23.6 million, up by 4.9 million over five years, Xinhua news agency reported.
It means 36 per cent of the British population is on the donor register, compared to 30 per cent five years ago.
“The milestone figure has been reached thanks to record levels of public support for organ donation and improvements in survival rates,” said a spokeswoman for NHS Blood and Transplant.
In the past year the number of persons receiving a transplant in a single year has reached the record figure of 4,753, an increase of 20 per cent in the last five years.
Survival rates for recipients of transplanted organs has continued to improve in Britain.
An adult receiving the most common type of kidney transplant during the early 1990s had a 66 per cent chance it would still be functioning after five years.
The new report shows adults who received the same type of transplant five years ago have an 87 per cent chance their kidney is still functioning today.
Last year 457 persons died while waiting for a transplant and a further 875 persons were removed from the list, mainly because they were too ill to undergo transplant surgery.
There are still around 6,400 persons currently waiting for a transplant in Britain.
Sally Johnson, Director at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “It’s amazing to picture all the people now alive today thanks to organ donation. However, around three people still die a day in need of a transplant.”