Kidneys

Donating your kidney is a potentially life-saving gift. Usually, kidney donation is something that happens after you die, but it is also possible to give the gift of living kidney donation.

Your kidney donation could transform the life of someone dependent on daily dialysis. If you wish to be an organ donor after your death, why not register today? The register is a permanent record of your wish to be a donor after your death and can be updated at any time.

If you are interested in living donation, find out more about becoming a living donor (pdf) including how to make contact with a living donor transplant centre (pdf) for further information.

Can I be a kidney donor?

Both your kidneys can be donated after your death and potentially used for two kidney transplants. But, because you can live a healthy life with just one kidney, it is possible to donate one kidney as a living donor.

There are huge numbers of people needing a kidney transplant. For many of these it can be very difficult to find a suitable donor. We encourage everyone to be a donor for the following reasons:

Why do people need a kidney donation?

Your kidneys balance the amount of fluids and minerals in your body and create hormones. When they are not working properly, people have to spend many hours a day attached to a dialysis machine to replace some of these functions. A kidney transplant gives people the chance to live life free from dialysis. 

For patients with end stage kidney disease who are suitable for a kidney transplant, this is the best treatment option.

Find out more about the kidney and kidney transplants.

How to become a kidney donor

Tell your friends and family that you wish to be a kidney donor – it is very important that they understand and support your organ donation because they will always be asked to give consent if you die. Dealing with the death of a loved one is a difficult time to make an important decision quickly.

Sign up to the deceased Organ Donor Register online. This record helps to quickly match potential donors and recipients.

Find out more about living kidney donation.

Call us on 0300 123 23 23.

Further information

Register to donate

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