For three years, dad-of-two Malcolm McVeigh thought a persistent tickly cough would eventually go away.
He was stunned when doctors told him he had a severe lung condition. For a while it could be treated with medication, but a transplant was the only long-term option. “I was shocked. I’d hardly had a day’s illness before, so it was devastating. My kids were still young, so I’d always be running around after them.”
The condition left Malcolm gasping for breath and unable to walk for any length of time. It also meant he had to give up work.
He was on the waiting list for eight months when he finally got the call to say lungs had become available. After his transplant Malcolm suffered setbacks and spent three months in intensive care before getting out of hospital.
As Malcolm remembers, “The team at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle were amazing. But the person and people I can’t thank enough are my donor and her family. By joining the NHS Organ Donor Register and agreeing to donate they gave me another chance and have given my kids their dad back. I’ll always be grateful.”
Malcolm’s wife and children have all joined the NHS Organ Donor Register. As he says, “The majority of people agree with organ donation and would take an organ if they needed one. Please don’t put joining off to another time. Do it now. Something good can come out of something bad.”