The Government of Saskatchewan has pledged $558,000 for the creation of a provincial donor registry in its budget. The government said work on the project will begin immediately, with a goal of having it up and running before the end of their fiscal year in March 2020.
A report released by the provincial Standing Committee on Human Services in November 2016 said the province should set up a dedicated organ donation organization and a registry rather than a presumed consent program.
Former premier Brad Wall said he wanted to adopt a presumed consent program, but that never came to fruition. Health minister Jim Reiter told reporters last year that the government had “hit pause on the presumed consent, but haven’t ruled it out.”
Premier Scott Moe said Wednesday the registry is a positive step.
“We continue to work towards making it easier, possibly presumed consent, as we move along with the conversation of organ donation,” he said.
“What we see here today is a step toward that direction to ensure that people in this province are voluntarily signing up to our organ donation registry.”
In 2015, Saskatchewan had the lowest rate among all Canadian provinces for organ donation from dead donors.
Last year, the Ministry of Health reported the organ donation rate in Saskatchewan in 2016 was 12 donors per million population. In 2017, that had risen to 15 donors per million people.
The total budget projection for health for the coming fiscal year is $5.89 billion, which is $123 million more than last year.