Introduce 'Adrian's Law' To Educate Students About Organ Donation

Organ Donation Should Become Compulsory Education For Students, Says Grieving Father

A father who lost his son to leukaemia has called for a new law to give school and college students lessons about donating blood, organs and stem cells.

Adrian's Law would ensure every pupil over 16 would be given at least one session on becoming a donor.

It would be named after Adrian Sudbury, a 27-year-old reporter, from Sheffield, South Yorkshire, who died in August 2008 after a two-year battle with leukaemia.

His campaigning father, Keith Sudbury, has been backed by blood cancer charity Anthony Nolan.

Sudbury said: "We urgently need more people willing to donate blood and stem cells.

"By taking this message to students aged 16 years and over we can grow the first generation of potential lifesavers who really understand what it means to donate blood, organs and stem cells."

Although his son received a transplant, he died.

The Huddersfield Examiner journalist spent the last two years of his life campaigning for better education about stem cell donation.

He took a petition of 11,300 signatures to Downing Street, inspiring then Prime Minister Gordon Brown to write to celebrities to raise awareness of the campaign.

Every 20 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer, such as leukaemia, according to Anthony Nolan.

There are nearly 1,600 people in the country in need of a blood stem cell transplant - usually their last chance of survival - the charity said.

Nearly three-quarters of patients (70%) will not find a matching donor from within their family, it added.

Young people can donate blood at 17, join the Anthony Nolan register at 18 and join the NHS Organ Donor Register at any age.

Young people are much more likely to be selected as a match for a stem cell donation but 18 to 30-year-olds make up 12% of the register, according to Anthony Nolan.

The charity is campaigning to dramatically increase the number of young people on its register.

There are 430,000 people on the register.

In memory of their son, Sudbury and Adrian's mother Kay Sudbury developed a school education programme called Register And Be A Lifesaver (R&Be) which Anthony Nolan delivers in collaboration with NHS Blood and Transplant.


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