Just about everyone – regardless of age, gender, ethnic background, or lifestyle has the power to save at least one life.
As we celebrate Valentine’s Day, let’s pause for a moment to also recognize National Organ Donor Day.
Here are some powerful numbers to consider:
- 110,296 people in the U.S. are waiting for an organ
- every 11 minutes, someone is put on the donor waiting list
- An average of 75 people receive organ transplants each day. However, an average of 20 people die each day waiting for transplants that can’t take place because of the shortage of donated organs.
- one organ donor can save up to eight lives
- As of November 2010, the national waiting list included 45% White, 29% Black, 18% Hispanic, and 6% Asian patients.
(all stats: National Institutes of Health)
Organ transplantation is now an accepted medical treatment for end-stage organ failure. But it only works if you sign up to be a donor. The easiest way is to check the box and sign the back of your driver’s license. Let your family know your wishes, should you become fatally injured or sick. Make sure to put your wishes in writing, and keep a copy on file at your physician’s office, with your spiritual leader, and with your important personal papers.
Every state has a donor registry – it takes just minutes to sign up. State information is also available at organdonor.gov and through your state’s department of health.
Death isn’t something we like to discuss. So instead, talk about how you can give life.