In 2010, we were asked to participate in the formation of Transplant 2013, a group of patients (and patient organisations), Clinicians and Industry representatives with the following mission statement:
"To promote leadership of organ donation and transplantation in Parliament and other relevant institutions and facilitate communication and consensus within the transplant community in order to support the implementation of the Organ Donation Taskforce’s recommendations, ensure that the target to increase organ donation after death by 50% in 2013 is met, and significantly increase the number of organ transplants."
The inaugural AGM was held in May but the formal launch was on 23rd November in Portculis House, Westminster and trustees Mandy (our representative on this project), vice-chair Matt and Holly all attended.
Transplant 2013 has a wonderful champion in Chris Williamson MP (Shadow Minister for Communities and Local Government) who has been personally affected by organ donation as his wife Lolly sadly died waiting for a single lung transplant 7 years ago. He spoke candidly about his wife, and their struggles as she waited on the transplant waiting list. There were speeches from the President of the British Transplant Society (BTS) Keith Rigg (who is also Chair of Transplant 2013) and the National Clinical Director for Transplantation, the wonderful Chris Rudge.
Excitingly Chris Williamson launched the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) on Transplantation on December 15th, and so far has good interest from his fellow MP’s!
As well as LLTGL and a number of MP’s, other groups represented included the various groups participating in Transplant 2013, such as:
- Charities and Clinician Groups included: British Transplant Society; National Kidney Federation; British Liver Trust, Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the British Society for Immunology
- From Industry – Novatis; Astellas, Genzyme and Alexion
As well as others we may not have mentioned!
It was a great opportunity for us to talk with people who share our goals and want to see the numbers of transplants being undertaken increased and more people signing the Organ Donor Register. We met up with some old friends too including Lucy Pearson and her Mum.
So watch this space, we will keep you updated on our continuing work with Transplant 2013 and its progress.