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Information for Donors

Frequently Asked Questions

As a patient, if I am approached in hospital and asked to donate tissue for biomedical research, do I have to take part?

It is entirely your decision whether or not to donate your tissue for biomedical research. If you do decide to take part, you will be given an information leaflet that explains what will happen and you will be asked to sign a consent form.

Donation of tissue is a gift, so when you sign the consent form you will give ownership of any research samples collected to Ethical Tissue who will store the samples for an indefinite period of time and will be able to decide how they will be used for research. However we aim to get donations of tissue into research projects as quickly as possible.

Ethical Tissue will also take responsibility for the disposal of any unused stored tissue or products derived from the tissue in an appropriate and ethical manner following normal hospital routes and methods of disposal.

If you decide to take part you are still free to withdraw at any time and you don't have to provide a reason. The decision not to take part in any research project will NOT affect the standard of care you receive from the hospital.

What happens if I change my mind and want to withdraw my samples?

You can withdraw by writing to Ethical Tissue.

As a patient what about donor confidentiality?

Your hospital is in charge of making sure that information about you remains strictly confidential. No identifying information is included or stored with your sample before it is recorded on the tissue bank database and is NOT given out to researchers.

A code number will identify your sample, and neither you nor your relatives will ever be identified or contacted. All stored data is covered by the Data Protection Act. For further information, please contact the Head of Ethical Tissue.