UTV launches organ donation campaign

Published Tuesday, 12 February 2013
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With 15 people dying in Northern Ireland each year while waiting for a transplant, UTV has launched a new campaign - From The Heart - to raise awareness of organ donation and the NHS Organ Donor Register.

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UTV will be highlighting the shortage of donated organs UK-wide, with the aim of encouraging viewers to volunteer to join the organ donor register and talk to their loved ones about their wishes.

In Northern Ireland, around 200 people are on the active transplant list.

However, only 31% of people have registered as donors - a much lower proportion of the population than in some other parts of the world.

UK-wide, 10,000 people are in need of a transplant and 1,000 of them die waiting every year.

All this week, a range of special shows on UTV and across the ITV network, will look at the issue of organ donation, exploring the implications of the donor shortage and the reasons behind it.

They will also focus on the recipients of donor organs - and how everyone has the opportunity to make a difference, giving a gift this Valentine's Day that could transform the lives of others.

With this campaign, we are using a memorable date in the nation's calendar - Valentine's Day - to raise awareness of an issue that touches many lives.

Michael Wilson, UTV

UTV Live will feature a special report, while a Tonight special at 8pm on Wednesday will examine public attitudes to organ donation and tell a series of personal stories of those on the waiting list.

Then at 9pm on Wednesday, a host of stars will join presenter Dermot O'Leary for a one-hour entertainment special.

From The Heart will feature a range of musical and comedy treats from the likes of Rowan Atkinson, Hugh Laurie, Pixie Lott, Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse, who will come together to pledge their support for the awareness-raising campaign.

Throughout the week, Daybreak, This Morning and Loose Women will all show their support for the campaign, featuring case studies and personal stories.

Check out UTV's dedicated microsite From The Heart for information on organ donation, and also a 'join the register' button to make the process of signing up easy for viewers who wish to do so.

You can also follow the campaign on Twitter using the hashtag #fromtheheart.
© UTV News
Comments Comments
HAPPY FACE in BELFAST wrote (430 days ago):
This donor appeal is brilliant i signed up for it as soon as i read the utv news. On a lighter note,i was talking to a guy who was wearing a wig, i asked him if he ever considered inplants instead of the wig,But he ask me if he would look foolish running about with two kidneys on his head. Daw
Mark in Leicestershire wrote (431 days ago):
As a Kidney Transplant patient having had my transplant since 1992 and still going strong I can defiantly say the effects are life changing and is a double edge sword effect as it not only helps the patient but also the donors family in time of need knowing that some how their loved one is still living on and helping someone else. Myself I can say i am still physically fit and healthy today as I was over twenty years ago when I first had the transplant and this is in part due to the magnificent doctors , nurses and surgeons who help make these transplants possible not forgetting the donors family's who under extreme circumstances agree for their loved ones organs to be used I think I can say on behalf of all transplantees THANK YOU
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