Organ Donation

Clinical Pathways for Organ Donation

This area has been developed to provide healthcare professionals throughout the UK with a single access point to comprehensive educational resources and information on complex processes in organ donation.

Contracted by the NHS, organ donation pathways are related to deceased donation and can be used for teaching for all healthcare professionals working in areas with donation potential, providing a best practice operational guide for those units where donation is not a frequent occurrence.

A committed group of Subject Matter Experts involved in designing the Professional Development Programme Masterclass for NHSBT, anaesthetics and nursing professionals covering the UK developed the pathways, which can be accessed by any healthcare professional as well as members of the public.

The pathways are designed to be view online however, Pdf files of the pathways can be downloaded via the following links:

Pathway 1
Neurological Determination of Death (Brain-stem Death), Adult

Neurological Determination of Death (Brain-stem Death), Paediatric

Pathway 2
Donation after Brain-stem Death, Adult

 Donation after Brain-stem Death, Children

Pathway 3
Donation after Circulatory Death, Adult

Donation after Circulatory Death, Children

Pathway 4
Donor Identification in Emergency Medicine

Pathways have been reviewed by professional bodies including representatives from the following organisations:

Sincere thanks goes to the immeasurably important contributions made to the development of these pathways by the following subject matter experts:

Royal College of Anaesthetists: Julian Bion

Intensive Care Society: Kevin Gunning and Saxon Ridley

College of Emergency Medicine: Brodie Paterson

British Transplantation Society: Simon Bramhall

The Department of Health: Chris Rudge

British Association of Critical Care Nurses: Kathy Dalley

Donation after Cardiac Death: Paul Glover, Gerlinde Mandersloot, Joyce Stuart, Chris Watson, Ros O'Sullivan

Diagnosis of Death: Alex Manara, Dale Gardiner, Jackie Brander

Donor Management: Dermot Mckeown, Paul McAndrew, Andrew Broderick, Liz Waite

Donation in the Emergency Department: Francis Andrews, Paula Aubrey, Teressa Tymkewycz, Trish Burton

Donor Identification, referral and consent /authorisation (including Cultural Issues): Ella Poppitt, Gurch Randawa

Legal Issues Relating to Organ Donation: David Price, Chris Danbury

General advise and expertise: Mark Patten, Michelle Tyler, Marian Ryan, Dan Aldridge

Pam Niklin from Map of Medicine for technical guidance

Join the Organ Donor Register 0300 123 23 23

Map of Medicine is helping the NHS respond to the challenge of delivering high quality care in the current environment. Map of Medicine is a visual representation of evidence-based, practice-informed pathways. A key tool for clinically-led service improvement programmes, the Map has been shown to improve patient outcomes and lower healthcare delivery costs.

All NHS staff in England and Wales have access to the Map. For more information visit