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One organ and tissue donor can transform the lives of many people. Australia is a world leader for successful transplants. Australia’s donation rate has more than doubled in recent years, but there is much more we can do.

In Australia and internationally the need for transplantation exceeds the availability of organs. Around 1,600 Australians are currently waitlisted for a transplant. On average, people on the transplant list must wait between 6 months – 4 years. A further 12,000 Australians are on dialysis, many of whom would benefit from a kidney transplant.


  • In 2019, 1,683 lives were transformed by 548 deceased and 239 living organ donors and their families.
  • In 2019, more than 12,000 Australians benefited from eye and tissue donation.
  • If more people say ‘yes’ to organ donation, more transplants will occur.
  • 1 in 3 Australiansare registered donors, despite the majority of Australians (69%) being willing to donate their organs and/or tissue when they die.
  • Only around 2% of people who die in Australian hospitals can be considered for organ donation. To be an organ donor, a person must die in a hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU) or emergency department (ED) and be medically assessed as suitable to donate organs for transplantation.
  • In Australia families are always asked to agree to donation. 90% of families say yes to donation when their loved one is a registered donor, compared to the national consent rate of 62%. If our national consent rate reaches 70%, Australia would be in the top 10 performing countries globally.
  • In 2019, there were over 221,641 new registrations on the Australian Organ Donor Registry.
  • Over the past 10 years, the number of deceased organ donors has more than doubled, resulting in over 13,000 Australians receiving a life-saving transplant.
  • While the majority of Australians (71%) think it’s important to talk with their family/partner, only half (51%) of Australians have discussed whether they want to be a donor.

Our aim is to promote and encourage bringing up the conversation of organ and tissue donation to friends and family. You and your loved ones decisions could save the lives of many people.

Aussies who donated in 2019

The donation rates below are from the Australian and New Zealand Organ Donor Registry. The number represents how many donors per million people (dpmp) from that state or territory donated in 2019. The overall Australian donation rate in 2019 was 21.6 donors per million people (dpmp).

For more 2019 stats please see the Australian Donation and Transplantation 2019 Activity Report.

To join the Australian Organ Donor Register and for more information, please visit Donate Life


  • One organ and tissue donor can transform the lives of 10 or more people.
  • Australia is a world leader for successful transplant outcomes.
  • Around 1,500 people are on Australian organ transplant waiting lists at any one time.
  • To lift donation rates the Australian Government, with State and Territory Governments, has implemented a national reform programme, ‘A World’s Best Practice Approach to Organ and Tissue Donation for Transplantation’.
  • The Australian Government funds dedicated doctors and nurses in 72 hospitals to work specifically on organ and tissue donation. These positions are part of the national DonateLife Network which also includes State Medical Directors, Organ Donor Coordinators and Donor Family Support Coordinators.
  • In 2014, 1,117 Australians received an organ transplant as a result of the generosity of 378 organ donors whose families agreed to donation at the time of their loved one’s death.
  • Complementing the significant progress made in the clinical sector, Australia needs more active engagement and awareness within the community to increase Australia’s family consent rate.
  • The Australian Government’s national reform programme includes actions to increase clinical capacity and capability and to increase community engagement and awareness in relation to organ and tissue donation. In Australia the family will always be asked to confirm the donation decision of the deceased before donation can proceed.

Did you know…?

  • Australia is a world leader for successful transplant outcomes. In 2014, 378 organ donors gave 1,117 transplant recipients a new chance in life.
  • Australia’s 2014 donation outcomes represent a 53% increase over the 2009 outcomes, the year the DonateLife Network was established.
  • In 2014, Australia’s donation rate was 16.1 deceased donors per million population (dpmp), a 41% increase over 11.4 dpmp in 2009.
  • More than 60% of families give consent for organ and tissue donation to proceed.
  • Around 1,500 people are on Australian organ transplant waiting lists at any one time.
  • On average, people on the transplant list must wait between six months and four years.
  • The most important thing that helps a family’s decision is their knowing the donation decision of their loved one.

‘If you’d say YES to a life-saving transplant….have you said YES to becoming an organ and tissue donor?’

Visit DonateLife for more information