The gift of donation11/6/2023
Almost 104,000 people in the United States need an organ transplant. * Nearly 2,000 of them live in Arizona. * The numbers are staggering, yet there is plenty of hope to work to save their lives.
Just one organ and tissue donor can make a profound impact on these numbers through their choice to share life. Donated organs restore health and extend life for those whose own organs are failing. Tissue donors help by restoring sight, preventing limb amputation, healing burn victims, repairing bone, tendon and ligament damage after trauma and much more.
THE POWER TO HEAL
Each organ donor has the potential to restore health and extend the lives of eight people! You may choose to donate the following organs:
Tissue donation is just as impactful. One tissue donor can restore 75 lives, and each year more than 1 million people in the United States are touched by these gifts. From heart valves that repair congenital heart defects, to ligaments that restore mobility, and eyes that give the gift of sight, tissue and ocular donation offers hope and healing for many.
While organ and tissue transplant surgeries are now standard and highly successful procedures, the need for such gifts is still great. Every nine minutes, someone gets added to the national organ waiting list. Thousands wait to receive lifesaving organ transplants and life-healing tissue transplants in Arizona and across the nation.
When an individual passes away in an Arizona hospital, regulations require someone from the hospital to contact Donor Network of Arizona (DNA) to report that death. Someone at DNA then has the chance to check whether the patient was a registered organ and tissue donor through the DonateLifeAZ Registry.
If the patient had made the choice during his or her lifetime to register as an organ and tissue donor, our team counsels and supports the donor’s family as we honor the donor’s decision to share life. If the patient has not made a decision, the patient’s family is invited to make the decision about donation on their loved one’s behalf.
After the patient, or his or her family, makes the decision to give the gift of life, our clinical staff consults with the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) and transplant hospitals to find matches on the national organ waiting list. When matches are found, organs are allocated based on many factors, including medical urgency and distance, so that those who are in the most need are able to receive a lifesaving transplant from the generous donor.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
The decision to register as an organ and tissue donor is to make the choice to share life. The DNA team works closely with Arizona hospitals to make the most of these gifts, saving and healing lives throughout Arizona and across the United States. You too can save and heal lives when you apply for or renew a driver’s license or state ID at an ADOT MVD or select authorized third-part offices. You can also register online right now at DonateLifeAZ.org.
*Data as of Oct. 31, 2023