A NEW report has recommended a move to an opt-out transplant system to help more patients affected by Cystic Fibrosis.

The Cystic Fibrosis Trust said the change would heighten the debate around transplantation and encourage people to discuss organ donation while they are still alive.

The charity is also calling for a new national system to match lungs with those most in need, regardless of where they live.

It says this has the potential to double the number of procedures across the UK.

A third of cystic fibrosis patients die waiting for a transplant in the UK.

The report entitled Hope For More - Improving Access to Lung Transplantation and Care For People With Cystic Fibrosis, made 13 recommendations including a change to an opt-out system, where the default position is that everyone is a donor.

Wales is to switch to an opt-out system on December 1 2013. The Evening Times is campaigning for a similar change in Scotland.

The report states: "We are very interested in the progress in organ donation and awareness that is expected from the Human Transplantation Act in Wales, which from 2015 introduces a system where consent to organ donation after death is deemed to be given in the absence of express consent.

"We believe the shift to this system of consent will heighten the national debate around transplantation and encourage people to discuss organ donation with their friends and families while they are still alive.

"The heightened public awareness means that family discussions are more likely to take place. These prior discussions make it more likely that family members

will respect the wishes of their relatives to donate organs at the time of their death.