Glasgow MSP, Humza Yousaf, has appealed for more members of the Black and Minority Ethnic communities to come forward and sign up to the organ donor register. Statistics show that members of the South Asian community in particular are more susceptible to diabetes, kidney infections and coronary heart disease than their Caucasian counterparts and therefore in greater need of an organ transplant.
Urging more members of the Asian community to sign on to the register, Humza Yousaf said:
“Due to a number of factors affecting their health, Asian people are more likely to be on the waiting list for an organ transplant. Organs are more likely to match if they come from someone of the same ethnicity and a lack of BME people on the register means those needing an organ are waiting for up to three times longer than the average person in the UK.
“I know from my own experience, a lot of misinformation from a cultural and religious perspective causes confusion amongst some of our communities. I am pleased that prominent Islamic scholars in Scotland are involved in communicating the right message on organ donation and encouraging people from the Muslim community to register.
“In addition, I will be hosting a roundtable in the new year made up of BME doctors, health experts and community leaders to discuss how we can further promote the organ donor register within our communities.
“We all have the ability to save a life. By signing up to the register and encouraging others to do likewise we can make a difference to families across Scotland. New Year is the perfect time to make a resolution to sign up and not put it off a day longer.”
Renowned Scottish Islamic Scholar, Shaykh Ruzwan Mohammed remarked:
"Raising awareness of what organ transplantation entails, discussing it openly at a family and community level as well as putting in place an active educational program will all remove the misconceptions some in the Muslim community have surrounding the validity of transplantation. Human transplantation has been researched in detail in numerous conferences on Islamic medical ethics and the process has been ratified by almost all international Islamic scholarly bodies."