An Inventory of Deceased Donor Family Care and Contact Between Donor Families and Recipients in 15 European Countries

T. Wind*, N. Jansen, A. Floden, B. Haase-Kromwijk, D. Shaw, D. Gardiner, ELPAT Deceased Donation Group

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Families of organ donors play an important role in the deceased organ donation process. The aim of this study was to gain insight into donor family care by creating an inventory of practice in various European countries. A questionnaire about donor family care and contact between donor families and recipients was developed. Representatives of the organ donor professionals of 15 European countries responded (94%). The donor coordinator plays a key role in care for the donor family. All countries provide information about the donation results to the families, although diminished due to privacy laws. Anonymous written contact between donor families and recipients is possible in almost all countries and direct contact in only a few. Remembrance ceremonies exist in most countries. Half of the respondents thought the aftercare could improve. This first inventory shows that differences exist between countries, depending on the organisation of the donation process, the law and the different role of the professionals. Direct contact between donor families and recipients is rarely supported by the donation organisation. To date there has been limited research about the experience of donor family aftercare and we would urge all donation organisations to consider this as a priority area.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10188
Number of pages7
JournalTransplant International
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jan 2022


  • organ donation
  • donor family care
  • contact donor and recipient
  • remembrance ceremonies
  • family after care

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