Scotland Cricketers Appeal to Donors
From Photos: Donald MacLeod
Scottish international cricket players have urged more people from Scotland’s black, asian and minority ethnic communities to join the NHS Organ Donor Register.
The call has been issued as those from black, asian and minority ethnic backgrounds are three to four times more likely to need a kidney transplant due to being more prone to developing diabetes or high blood pressure. Yet currently less than 2% of Scots registered are from these communities.
As a result people from black, asian and minority ethnic backgrounds are also likely to wait nearly twice as long as a white person for a kidney to become available as donated organs need to be carefully matched to ensure blood and tissue groups are compatible.
The likelihood of a close match being found and the transplant being successful is increased if the patient is from the same ethnic group.
With all major religions in the UK supporting the principles of organ donation and transplantation, the players today added their voice in a bid to help those from BAME communities currently waiting on the transplant that could save their life.
Speaking about his support for the Scottish Government’s nationwide campaign to get more people from ethnic minority communities to join the Register, international cricket player Moneeb Iqbal said: “I would urge everyone to take the time to think about organ donation and consider joining the NHS Organ Donor Register.
“Ultimately it’s an individual choice, and people have their own beliefs, but with black, asian and minority ethnic backgrounds under-represented on the NHS Organ Donor Register , it is especially important that we all come together and unite on organ donation in order to help those waiting. We all have it in us to save a life after death.”
Roddy Smith, CEO of Cricket Scotland said: “As a multicultural sport, Cricket Scotland is very pleased to support such a worthwhile campaign. We hope that by being part of raising awareness on the issue that more people sign-up to be organ donors and ultimately help save lives.”
Dr Rajan Madhok has been working with Asian and black communities to bust the myths and increase awareness of organ donation.
He said: "Organ donation is a difficult and often taboo subject within BAME communities. There's a host of misconceptions surrounding the issue which is why we are working to change this and educate more people about the process.
"There's a shortage of compatible donors for patients from ethnic minority backgrounds but this can be turned around.
"The principle of organ donation is supported by all the major religions in the UK but many people are unsure of where their religion stands. We’re explaining to people there's no reason not to join the Register. You can help save a life after your death."
More than 2 million Scots are on the NHS Organ Donor Register – at 41% of the population this is the highest proportion in the UK. To show your support register now; text LIFE to 61611 or visit www.organdonationscotland.org