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The current situation, whereby 8,000 individuals require a transplant but only 3,000 operations a year are carried out because of the lack of available organs, reflects not only the points made by my hon. Friend but those made by my hon. Friend the Member for Livingston (Mr. Devine), who illustrated from his professional experience the added difficulties and strains in the health service. The situation is worse than that. Some 4,000 patients are never put on the list. Practitioners are reluctant to list
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patients whom they believe are never likely to receive a suitable organ because there is such a limited supply of organs for transplant.

I, too, want to pay tribute to the constituents of my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Rob Marris)—the late John Cox and his wife Rosemary—who have done so much to advance the achievement of a sensible situation in the UK.

The gap highlighted between the number of those who require transplants and the number of available organs led my right hon. Friend the Member for Doncaster, Central (Ms Winterton), when she was Health Minister, to set up the organ donation taskforce. The taskforce’s membership was drawn from a wide range of specialties and interests, including media, diversity issues and the voluntary sector. It undertook a thorough and productive period of research to identify the barriers to organ donation and how they might be overcome. Like my hon. Friends, I carried a card for a long time and I am on the register. So few people appreciate the simplicity of the registration process and how it makes organs available.

The taskforce looked at evidence from Europe and the US, but especially from Spain. The evidence from Spain was very important because, as my hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire noted, Spain has the highest rate of organ donation in the world, at around 33 per million people. In contrast, the UK has one of the lowest donation rates in Europe.

In addition, many aspects of the Spanish model have been successfully imported to other areas, such as northern Italy and certain parts of South America. It is therefore clear that we need to look at the formula that is used in Spain.

The taskforce has recommended that the UK adopt the sort of broad-based approach to be found in Spain. It said that there needs to be investment in infrastructure and that the UK must ensure it maximises its potential for donation rates. That includes establishing a UK-wide organ donor organisation as part of the NHS blood and transplant service, a point that my hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire made.

The taskforce also said that we needed a dedicated and strengthened network of organ retrieval teams to work with hospitals’ critical care teams. It added that the number of front-line co-ordinators working with families and the hospitals that donate and receive organs should be doubled to around 100—exactly the point made by my hon. Friend the Member for Livingston. Moreover, it said that all parts of the NHS should embrace organ donation as usual business, not as an unusual event, and that is precisely the point that my hon. Friend made about GPs.

Other recommendations from the taskforce were that donor activity in all health trusts should be monitored, and that all clinical and nursing staff likely to be involved in treating potential organ donors should receive mandatory training in donation.

My hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire rightly spoke about funding, and the House will know that my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health announced on 16 January that all the recommendations from the taskforce would be accepted. To enable their implementation, extra funding of
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£11 million has been made available for 2008-09, with more to follow in future years.

Organ donation is an area of medicine that necessitates a high degree of co-ordination across the UK. For example, an organ donated in Glasgow, Cardiff or Belfast may be transplanted into a patient in London, or vice versa. It is therefore essential that a UK-wide approach is maintained, and that is the strong message that we have received from the taskforce. All the Ministers in the four UK health Departments have welcomed the taskforce’s recommendations, and are implementing them.

My hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire rightly touched on the need to oversee the delivery of the recommendations. I am therefore pleased to announce that Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, the medical director of the NHS, has agreed to head the group tasked with taking forward their implementation. We have already held discussions with a number of organisations so that early progress can be made.

My hon. Friend mentioned matters to do with presumed consent that are outside the taskforce’s original remit. Under the current system, as my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, South-West noted, families do not have a legal right of veto over a decision made by a donor when he or she was alive. Any system that we put in place must be aimed at helping people who wish to be donors to have their wish carried out, and that is something that will need to be taken into consideration.

Clearly, the taskforce’s work does not end there. The UK’s chief medical officers will need to take the work forward, and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has made it clear that he has asked the taskforce to consider the potential impact of introducing an opt-out system for organ donation. My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has said that he thinks now is the time for a public debate on the matter, and that we should move forward.

I have sympathy with those who want a change to the opt-out system as a step towards putting into practice the wishes of the many people who we know support the idea of donation in principle. It is important that when we develop that idea we find ways to move towards a system that helps people to donate and helps their wishes to be fulfilled, but also takes into consideration the views of others who may not wish to be covered by presumed consent. That needs to be done delicately, swiftly, and accurately if we are to meet the objectives of my hon. Friends present today.

I am delighted that all UK Governments have been able to commit to taking forward the recommendations. I am delighted that the taskforce, with its considerable expertise, is turning its attention to an opt-out system of presumed consent. Like my hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire, I look forward to the day, which I hope will come soon, when we have an agreed procedure that satisfies all, regardless of their views on organ donation, and that ensures that we match the Spanish rates and so help people to live fulfilled lives, rather than lives that are wasted because organs are not available. I commend the work of my hon. Friends to the House.

Question put and agreed to.

Adjourned accordingly at one minute past Eight o’clock.

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Deferred Division

European Defence Equipment Market and European Defence Agency

The House divided: Ayes 254, Noes 194.
Division No. 130]


Ainsworth, rh Mr. Bob
Alexander, rh Mr. Douglas
Anderson, Mr. David
Anderson, Janet
Armstrong, rh Hilary
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, Mr. Ian
Austin, John
Baird, Vera
Balls, rh Ed
Banks, Gordon
Barlow, Ms Celia
Barron, rh Mr. Kevin
Battle, rh John
Bayley, Hugh
Beckett, rh Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne
Bell, Sir Stuart
Benn, rh Hilary
Benton, Mr. Joe
Berry, Roger
Betts, Mr. Clive
Blackman, Liz
Blizzard, Mr. Bob
Borrow, Mr. David S.
Brennan, Kevin
Brown, Lyn
Brown, rh Mr. Nicholas
Brown, Mr. Russell
Browne, rh Des
Bryant, Chris
Burden, Richard
Burnham, rh Andy
Butler, Ms Dawn
Byers, rh Mr. Stephen
Cairns, David
Campbell, Mr. Alan
Campbell, Mr. Ronnie
Caton, Mr. Martin
Cawsey, Mr. Ian
Challen, Colin
Chapman, Ben
Chaytor, Mr. David
Clark, Ms Katy
Clarke, rh Mr. Charles
Clarke, rh Mr. Tom
Cohen, Harry
Cooper, Rosie
Cooper, rh Yvette
Cousins, Jim
Crausby, Mr. David
Cruddas, Jon
Cummings, John
Cunningham, Mr. Jim
Cunningham, Tony
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs. Claire
David, Mr. Wayne
Davies, Mr. Dai
Dean, Mrs. Janet
Devine, Mr. Jim
Dismore, Mr. Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, rh Frank
Donohoe, Mr. Brian H.
Doran, Mr. Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, Mr. David
Durkan, Mark
Eagle, Angela
Eagle, Maria
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs. Louise
Ennis, Jeff
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flello, Mr. Robert
Flint, rh Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Barbara
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings and Rye)
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Gapes, Mike
Gardiner, Barry
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Mr. Roger
Goggins, Paul
Goodman, Helen
Griffith, Nia
Grogan, Mr. John
Gwynne, Andrew
Hain, rh Mr. Peter
Hall, Mr. Mike
Hall, Patrick
Hanson, rh Mr. David
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harris, Mr. Tom
Havard, Mr. Dai
Healey, John
Hendrick, Mr. Mark
Heppell, Mr. John
Hesford, Stephen
Heyes, David
Hill, rh Keith
Hillier, Meg

Hodge, rh Margaret
Hodgson, Mrs. Sharon
Hood, Mr. Jim
Hoon, rh Mr. Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hopkins, Kelvin
Hosie, Stewart
Howells, Dr. Kim
Humble, Mrs. Joan
Hutton, rh Mr. John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
James, Mrs. Siân C.
Jenkins, Mr. Brian
Johnson, Ms Diana R.
Jones, Helen
Jones, Mr. Kevan
Jones, Lynne
Jones, Mr. Martyn
Joyce, Mr. Eric
Kaufman, rh Sir Gerald
Keeble, Ms Sally
Kelly, rh Ruth
Kemp, Mr. Fraser
Kennedy, rh Jane
Khan, Mr. Sadiq
Kidney, Mr. David
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Laxton, Mr. Bob
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Lewis, Mr. Ivan
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Llwyd, Mr. Elfyn
Love, Mr. Andrew
Lucas, Ian
Mackinlay, Andrew
MacNeil, Mr. Angus
MacShane, rh Mr. Denis
Mactaggart, Fiona
Mallaber, Judy
Mann, John
Marris, Rob
Marsden, Mr. Gordon
Martlew, Mr. Eric
McAvoy, rh Mr. Thomas
McCabe, Steve
McCafferty, Chris
McCarthy-Fry, Sarah
McDonagh, Siobhain
McFadden, Mr. Pat
McFall, rh John
McGovern, Mr. Jim
McGrady, Mr. Eddie
McGuire, Mrs. Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McNulty, rh Mr. Tony
Meale, Mr. Alan
Michael, rh Alun
Milburn, rh Mr. Alan
Miliband, rh Edward
Miller, Andrew
Moffat, Anne
Moffatt, Laura
Mole, Chris
Moon, Mrs. Madeleine
Morgan, Julie
Mountford, Kali
Mullin, Mr. Chris
Munn, Meg
Murphy, rh Mr. Paul
O'Brien, Mr. Mike
O'Hara, Mr. Edward
Olner, Mr. Bill
Osborne, Sandra
Owen, Albert
Pearson, Ian
Plaskitt, Mr. James
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Bridget
Prentice, Mr. Gordon
Price, Adam
Primarolo, rh Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Mr. Ken
Purnell, rh James
Raynsford, rh Mr. Nick
Reed, Mr. Andy
Reed, Mr. Jamie
Reid, rh John
Riordan, Mrs. Linda
Robertson, Angus
Robertson, John
Roy, Mr. Frank
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Christine
Salter, Martin
Sarwar, Mr. Mohammad
Seabeck, Alison
Sharma, Mr. Virendra
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Mr. Barry
Sheridan, Jim
Simon, Mr. Siôn
Simpson, Alan
Singh, Mr. Marsha
Skinner, Mr. Dennis
Slaughter, Mr. Andy
Smith, Ms Angela C. (Sheffield, Hillsborough)
Smith, Angela E. (Basildon)
Smith, Geraldine
Smith, rh Jacqui
Snelgrove, Anne
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Southworth, Helen
Spellar, rh Mr. John
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Stewart, Ian
Stoate, Dr. Howard
Strang, rh Dr. Gavin
Stringer, Graham
Sutcliffe, Mr. Gerry
Taylor, Ms Dari
Taylor, David
Thomas, Mr. Gareth
Thornberry, Emily
Timms, rh Mr. Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Touhig, rh Mr. Don
Trickett, Jon
Twigg, Derek
Walley, Joan
Waltho, Lynda
Wareing, Mr. Robert N.
Watson, Mr. Tom
Watts, Mr. Dave
Weir, Mr. Mike
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Wicks, Malcolm
Williams, rh Mr. Alan

Williams, Mrs. Betty
Williams, Hywel
Wilson, Phil
Winnick, Mr. David
Winterton, rh Ms Rosie
Wright, David
Wright, Mr. Iain
Wyatt, Derek

Afriyie, Adam
Ainsworth, Mr. Peter
Alexander, Danny
Ancram, rh Mr. Michael
Arbuthnot, rh Mr. James
Atkinson, Mr. Peter
Baker, Norman
Baldry, Tony
Baron, Mr. John
Barrett, John
Beith, rh Mr. Alan
Bellingham, Mr. Henry
Benyon, Mr. Richard
Bercow, John
Blunt, Mr. Crispin
Bone, Mr. Peter
Boswell, Mr. Tim
Bottomley, Peter
Brady, Mr. Graham
Brake, Tom
Brazier, Mr. Julian
Brokenshire, James
Brooke, Annette
Browne, Mr. Jeremy
Bruce, rh Malcolm
Burrowes, Mr. David
Burstow, Mr. Paul
Burt, Alistair
Burt, Lorely
Butterfill, Sir John
Cameron, rh Mr. David
Campbell, Mr. Gregory
Carmichael, Mr. Alistair
Carswell, Mr. Douglas
Cash, Mr. William
Clappison, Mr. James
Clark, Greg
Clifton-Brown, Mr. Geoffrey
Crabb, Mr. Stephen
Davey, Mr. Edward
Davies, David T.C. (Monmouth)
Davies, Philip
Djanogly, Mr. Jonathan
Dodds, Mr. Nigel
Dorries, Mrs. Nadine
Duddridge, James
Duncan, Alan
Dunne, Mr. Philip
Ellwood, Mr. Tobias
Evans, Mr. Nigel
Evennett, Mr. David
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Mr. Michael
Farron, Tim
Featherstone, Lynne
Field, Mr. Mark
Foster, Mr. Don
Fox, Dr. Liam
Francois, Mr. Mark
Gale, Mr. Roger
Garnier, Mr. Edward
Gauke, Mr. David
George, Andrew
Gibb, Mr. Nick
Gillan, Mrs. Cheryl
Goodman, Mr. Paul
Goodwill, Mr. Robert
Gove, Michael
Gray, Mr. James
Green, Damian
Greening, Justine
Grieve, Mr. Dominic
Hague, rh Mr. William
Hammond, Mr. Philip
Hammond, Stephen
Hands, Mr. Greg
Harper, Mr. Mark
Harvey, Nick
Hayes, Mr. John
Heald, Mr. Oliver
Heath, Mr. David
Heathcoat-Amory, rh Mr. David
Hemming, John
Herbert, Nick
Hoban, Mr. Mark
Hollobone, Mr. Philip
Holmes, Paul
Horam, Mr. John
Howarth, David
Howarth, Mr. Gerald
Hughes, Simon
Hunt, Mr. Jeremy
Hunter, Mark
Jack, rh Mr. Michael
Jackson, Mr. Stewart
Jenkin, Mr. Bernard

Johnson, Mr. Boris
Jones, Mr. David
Kawczynski, Daniel
Keetch, Mr. Paul
Kennedy, rh Mr. Charles
Key, Robert
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Knight, rh Mr. Greg
Kramer, Susan
Laing, Mrs. Eleanor
Lancaster, Mr. Mark
Lansley, Mr. Andrew
Laws, Mr. David
Leech, Mr. John
Leigh, Mr. Edward
Letwin, rh Mr. Oliver
Lewis, Dr. Julian
Liddell-Grainger, Mr. Ian
Loughton, Tim
Mackay, rh Mr. Andrew
Maclean, rh David
Mates, rh Mr. Michael
Maude, rh Mr. Francis
May, rh Mrs. Theresa
McCrea, Dr. William
McIntosh, Miss Anne
McLoughlin, rh Mr. Patrick
Mercer, Patrick
Miller, Mrs. Maria
Mitchell, Mr. Andrew
Moss, Mr. Malcolm
Mulholland, Greg
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
Neill, Robert
Newmark, Mr. Brooks
O'Brien, Mr. Stephen
Öpik, Lembit
Osborne, Mr. George
Ottaway, Richard
Paice, Mr. James
Penning, Mike
Penrose, John
Prisk, Mr. Mark
Pritchard, Mark
Pugh, Dr. John
Randall, Mr. John
Reid, Mr. Alan
Rennie, Willie
Rifkind, rh Sir Malcolm
Robathan, Mr. Andrew
Robertson, Hugh
Robertson, Mr. Laurence
Rogerson, Dan
Rosindell, Andrew
Rowen, Paul
Russell, Bob
Sanders, Mr. Adrian
Scott, Mr. Lee
Selous, Andrew
Shapps, Grant
Simmonds, Mark
Simpson, David
Simpson, Mr. Keith
Smith, Sir Robert
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Spring, Mr. Richard
Stanley, rh Sir John
Streeter, Mr. Gary
Stunell, Andrew
Swayne, Mr. Desmond
Swinson, Jo
Swire, Mr. Hugo
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Teather, Sarah
Tredinnick, David
Turner, Mr. Andrew
Tyrie, Mr. Andrew
Vara, Mr. Shailesh
Viggers, Peter
Villiers, Mrs. Theresa
Wallace, Mr. Ben
Waterson, Mr. Nigel
Watkinson, Angela
Webb, Steve
Whittingdale, Mr. John
Wiggin, Bill
Willetts, Mr. David
Williams, Mark
Williams, Stephen
Willott, Jenny
Wilshire, Mr. David
Wilson, Mr. Rob
Winterton, Ann
Winterton, Sir Nicholas
Wright, Jeremy
Young, rh Sir George
Younger-Ross, Richard
Question accordingly agreed to.
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