Sharp increase in registered organ donors in first year of new law
The group of Netherlands residents who permit organ donation after death grew considerably since the introduction of the new donor law. In July 2021, 4.8 million people explicitly agreed to this. That is almost a million more than at the beginning of 2020, Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reported. The number of people who explicitly did not give consent also increased.
Since July 2020, the new Donor Act has ensured that all residents aged 18 or older are included in the Donor Register. Whether or not they consent to donation. They can indicate that they do not want to donate organs or tissues. The register states that people "have no objection to organ donation" if they do not register a choice.
The latter is the case with 3.3 million Netherlands residents. Another 1.5 million people decided to leave the decision up to their surviving family or designated person after they died.
By the middle of this year, three-quarters of residents aged 18 or older registered their choice on organ donation. That is 10.6 million people. Young people, in particular, have not made a choice. The group that explicitly does not consent to donation grew from 2.3 million people at the start of 2020 to 4.3 million in July 2021.
In the age group of 20 to 70 years, a majority of people consented to organ donation. The reverse is true for the over-80s. Women more often recorded their choice in the Donor Register and relatively more often agreed to organ donation than men.
In Urk, the percentage of people who permitted organ donation is the lowest at 15 percent. The percentage is also relatively low in many other municipalities in the Bible Belt, where many orthodox Protestants live. The percentage that gave permission is highest in Oost Gelre and Rozendaal.
Reporting by ANP