Last updated on 02 Apr 2024

Travelling outside the UK for organ transplantation

In some cases, people may wish or be required to travel outside the UK for an organ transplant. A transplant from a living or deceased donor in another country can be undertaken legally, when it is within approved legal, ethical and healthcare frameworks.

For anyone in England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland, it is an offence to seek, offer or receive payment or reward for donating organs for transplant. It is also an offence to initiate, negotiate, advertise or be involved in buying or selling human organs for transplantation anywhere in the world.

Relevant clinicians are required to report any instances where a person may have travelled outside the UK for an organ transplant. This includes where the transplant is legitimate and where the clinician has a concern. Once information is reported to the HTA, we will consider whether an offence under the Human Tissue Act 2004 or Modern Slavery legislation may have taken place and refer the report to the police if needed.

Members of the public who have specific concerns can refer these directly to their local police force, or to the HTA directly by emailing