JO DAVIES, a specialist nurse for organ donation at Nevill Hall
hospital in Abergavenny, who is married to the Bishop of Swansea
& Brecon, is cycling around Wales to raise awareness of the
need for organ donation.
This week, Mrs Davies has cycled 330 miles with a colleague,
calling in at 11 hospitals en route, to mark National
Transplant Week. She hopes to raise £2000 for the charity Donor
Family Network. She said: "We get lots of families who haven't had
a conversation with their relative, and don't know what they
wanted, so they default to a no." She wanted to "help people to
talk about it".
Last week, plans for a system of presumed consent for organ
donation were voted through by the Welsh Assembly. This means that
people will be assumed to have consented for their organs to be
donated, unless they have specifically opted out.
The Church in Wales and other faith groups had argued for a
"soft opt-out" system, which would allow a deceased person's
relatives a say on donation.
Research published this week suggested that Christians were more
likely to donate their organs than other groups. While 31 per cent
of the UK population overall have joined the NHS organ-donor
register, 48 per cent of the Christians surveyed said that they had
The research was carried out by the "fleshandblood" campaign, an
initiative between the NHS and Churches, including the C of E. The
campaign is designed to encourage Christians to donate blood and
join the organ-donor register (
Comment, 5 April). It is the first time the NHS has worked with
Churches on a national initiative of this kind.
A discussion was held at the General Synod this week, about ways
in which the Church could raise awareness of organ donation.