Organ donation and ethnicity

We need more donors from Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) groups because:

  • Some blood and Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) types are more common among some ethnic groups
  • Some ethnic groups are more likely to develop medical conditions that need blood, organs or tissue donations
  • People needing bone marrow are more likely to find a match with someone with a similar ethnic background

Patients from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities are more likely to need an organ transplant than the rest of the population as they are more susceptible to illnesses such as diabetes and hypertension, which may result in organ failure and the need for a transplant.

On average, patients from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities will wait six months longer for a kidney transplant than a white patient, due to the lack of suitable organs. Blood and tissue types need to match for a successful transplant and organs from people from the same ethnic background are more likely to be a close match.

Further information