Dr Rafael Matesanz, director of the National Transplant Organisation in Spain and one of the leading authorities on organ transplants in Europe, has said that the provision of "presumed consent" for donation in Britain would not work.
"Trying to modify the situation by changing the law, in my opinion, is dangerous because all the effort can concentrate in the law and you forget aspects that are more important," he said.
Spain has a law of presumed consent in place since 1979. Under the law it is presumed that those who die are willing to donate their organs unless they specifically state otherwise during their lifetime. The success rate is very high in Spain and that has prompted the UK to push for the same law.
But Dr Matesanz says that is not a solution. "There is no country in the world where there has been sustained improvement after changing the law," he said. Professor John Fabre, professor of clinical science at King's College school of medicine, agreed with him and said presumed consent was of no value whatsoever.