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21 May 2009

The “thank you letter” to donor families in Poland

A Woderska, J Czerwiński

Ann Transplant 2009; 14(1): 78-78 :: ID: 880487


Background: Literature review has shown that it is important for organ donor family members to receive feedback about the organ transplant recipients and affirmation that their decision has saved or improved the lives of the recipients. The aim of the study was to describe donor families' expectations and the model of feedback given to donor families in Poland.
Material/Methods: Analysis of survey data and interview material. 13 transplant centres were contacted by e-mail and asked to participate in the study, 7 of them have responded. The questionnaire included questions related to attitude towards "thank you letter" and technical aspects of communicating with donor family. Data regarding donor families' expectations were gathered through the e-mailed survey and telephone interview with the representative donor family member of the self-help organization associating 11 families.
Results: Usually transplant centres inform (some of them do not) donor families about age and sex of recipients, however specific information remain confidential. The letters are sent to the particular family members short time after transplantation. Donor families do not expect particular information regarding organ transplants recipients. They do only expect a letter expressing gratitude for decision they made as well as medical and psychological help after their loved one's death. Furthermore, registered letter with advice of delivery, but without a stamp of the transplant centre on envelope received 1-3 months after donation is expected.
Conclusions: Acknowledgement confi rming appreciation for the gifts and
psychosocial support for donor families after organ donation transplantation process (during the first 6 months) are essential factors that may contribute to coping with the loss of their beloved.

Keywords: Deceased Donor, Organ Procurement

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Annals of Transplantation eISSN: 2329-0358
Annals of Transplantation eISSN: 2329-0358