Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Are you a registered donor? Be kind and leave something behind

Today, more than 1,600 Ontarians are waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant and every three days someone will die waiting. April is BeADonor Month and I encourage you to register as an organ and tissue donor – more than four million Ontarians already have, but that’s only 33% of those eligible in the province.

Gift of Life graphic: 'your parting gift matters'By registering to be a donor, you recognize that your death can have the power to save or change someone’s life. In fact, one donor can save up to eight lives through the gift of heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, pancreas and intestines. Another 75 lives can be enhanced through the gift of tissue: eyes can restore sight; skin can help burn patients; bone can be used for joint replacements; heart valves can help patients with congenital heart disease; and tendons and ligaments can help recipients walk and run.

Since 2003, 17,639 Ontarians have received a lifesaving organ transplant and we can continue to grow that number with awareness about organ and tissue donation. There is a local volunteer group called the Muskoka/Simcoe Gift of Life Association that is made up of transplant recipients, living donors and donor families who are also working to increase awareness of organ and tissue donation and the importance of organ donor registration. You can find out more about them on their Facebook page.

Registering your consent for organ and tissue donation will give hope to those waiting. If you ever needed a transplant and would accept an organ donation are you also willing to give? To register, visit Register today and share your donation decision with your family. Even if you signed a donor card, formally registering as a donor is the only secure and guaranteed way to make your decision known. You can also access an Organ & Tissue Donor Registration form at any ServiceOntario centre and mail it in.

Together, we can help to build a nation of donors.