The head of a kidney charity has launched an attack on the government over organ donation, saying it will miss a target to boost donor rates by 50 per cent.
Tim Statham, chief executive of the National Kidney Federation, said too many people were dying because of poor strategy around boosting donor rates from people when they die.
The Organ Donor Taskforce, set up under Labour, was disbanded when the coalition came to power but no new one has been formed to replace it, he said.
And he added that the target set by the taskforce to increase organ donor rates by 50 per cent by 2013 will be missed.
The vast majority of people waiting for an organ in the UK are kidney patients.
“The Department of Health tells us they believe the target will be met but we are absolutely certain in our minds that it will not be,” Mr Statham said.
“We have spoken to people in the Department of Health and to Chris Rudge [who was tasked with boosting donation rates] and they agree it will not be met.
“We are currently at about 27 per cent, which has been achieved over the last four years, with only one year of the target left to go.
“We are certain it is going to be missed.”
Mr Statham said work urgently needed to be carried out to identify the problems around donation, adding there was a “huge amount of spin” from politicians.
“The message from a politician or NHS Blood and Transplant is that we must get more people to sign the organ donor register.
“Of course we want people to sign the register but the plain truth is that we have 18 million people in this country signed up to the register already.