see the draft guidance (which covers the new law.
https://www.hta.gov.uk/sites/default/fi ... nation.pdf
Role of the family
49. The family plays a key role in the donation process. The nature of the role with
respect to consent will depend on a number of factors including whether
consent has been expressly given by the potential donor, whether the
circumstances are such that consent may be deemed, or whether the family will
be asked to make the decision. Further information on the role of the family in
different donation situations is given throughout this Code.
50. Regardless of the particular role, sensitive communication and engagement
with the family play an essential part in supporting them throughout the
51. Family and friends are asked to provide medical and social background
information about the potential donor. This is not part of the consent process,
but a necessary part of clinical practice so that clinical decisions can be made
about the suitability of organ donation in light of all of the relevant information.
52. There are many factors that need to be considered in deciding whether
donation can proceed, based on the circumstances of each case. Each stage of
organ donation, from intensive care admission to organ retrieval, is
comprehensively set out in NHSBT’s guide ‘The Journey Through Intensive
Care and the Gift of Organ Donation’ which may provide useful information for
If those close to the potential donor object to the donation where appropriate
consent is in place, the SNOD/SR should discuss the matter sensitively with
them to understand their concerns. Although the family does not have the legal
right to overrule appropriate consent, it is important that its views are
considered (see paragraphs 75-81).
54. There may be situations where family members hold differing views. In these
cases the SNOD should provide them with the time and information they need
to come to an agreement. Further guidance on specific situations is given in
paragraphs 79, 108-110 and 157.
55. Where no individual in a qualifying relationship can be traced and there is no
record on the Organ Donor Register that the potential donor wanted to donate,
it is NHSBT policy that donation should not proceed.
56. If there is a decision to donate recorded on the Organ Donor Register but it is
not possible to trace an individual in a qualifying relationship, consent would be
in place. However, it is still unlikely that donation would proceed. This is for the
protection both of the patient and any recipients of organs, as the family plays a
key part in providing clinicians with medical information.
Faith and beliefs
57. Attending to a potential donor’s cultural and religious/non-religious beliefs is an
important part of person-centred care. Such beliefs should be considered
sensitively and as a decisive factor in determining the views of the potential
donor regarding consent for donation.
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