In a district general hospital serving 303,000 people, deaths from cerebrovascular incidents over 12 months were analysed retrospectively. 8 patients who died in general wards were identified as potential organ donors. A working party then devised a protocol for managing such donors by transfer to the intensive care unit for support until organ retrieval could be arranged. In the first 19 months with the protocol, organs (1 heart, 2 sets of heart valves, 2 livers, and 16 kidneys) were retrieved from 8 patients who would not otherwise have become donors. If these results were replicated nationally a further 16.7 donors per million per year would be added to the current annual UK rate of 14.6 donors per million.