April is National Donate Life Month, a time to raise awareness about the importance of organ donation to saving lives.
According to national statistics, more than 100,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant and about 17 people in the United States die each day waiting.
Human organs are important to specific bodily functions. Several organs can be successfully transplanted from one person to another. These include the heart, kidneys, lungs and the liver. Eyes are also candidates for transplant procedures, as are body tissues, such as the skin, heart valves, ligaments, bones, etc., to help repair another person’s injuries or improve their condition.
Registering is important
Although many people are in favor of organ donorship, they fail to register as an organ donor, which would signal to healthcare providers that someone is a candidate for organ donation if that person was in a fatal accident or nearing the end of their life.
In Oregon, signing up to be an organ donor takes place at the state level through the Department of Motor Vehicles. You must be at least 15 years old to register as an organ, eye and tissue donor and your health or physical condition is not a factor. Registered organ donors have it noted on their driver’s license, permit or identification card. Registering ensures that your name is added to a digital donor registry. You can register in person, online or by mail.
The most important thing? Let your family members know of your wishes to be a donor. And if you change your mind, you may remove your organ donor designation by paying for a renewed license or ID card.
Organ donors are symbols of hope for many children and adults who are waiting for a change for the better. In this National Donate Life Month, consider registering as an organ donor.