Who are you: Emma Little (specialist nurse for organ donation for 16 years), and Laura Champion (specialist nurse for organ donation since 2021.
Summarise your role: We are based at East Surrey Hospital and are employed by NHS Blood and Transplant as part of a job share. We cover a wide geographical area spanning Kent, Surrey, Sussex, Channel Islands and Gibraltar. We work alongside families whose loved ones are expected to be end of life (EOL), asking them important questions about organ donation. We also work with consultants, coroners and donor surgeons within the UK and Europe, making sure the donor is treated with care, dignity and respect throughout. We promote organ donation and Max and Kiera’s law, we all as best practise for organ donation. There are over 8,000 people waiting for a transplant every day in the UK with, on average, three people dying everyday because they haven’t been able to receive a transplant.
What do you find challenging about your role: The hours are challenging, as we can do up to 18 hours on a shift. The geographical distances that we travel (or fly!) can be tough.
What do you find rewarding: The most privileged thing we do is meet organ donation families, as we offer them an alternative legacy when their loved one is not expected to survive. It causes a ripple effect for those waiting for life saving transplants. We also meet the families again at the annual Order of St John’s service where they are recognised for their generosity. It is amazing to see the impact donations have on saving lives and giving hope.
What do you enjoy outside of work: Laura likes theme parks and just loves her family. Emma loves spending well-appreciated time with her family.
Find out more about organ donation here.