Most of us have heard of heartwarming organ donation stories. Yet, a lot of people don’t take the leap of becoming an organ donor. There’s no denying that organ donation is important, relevant, and worth sharing about – One deceased donor can save the lives of eight patients. In the US, more than 114,000 patients are waiting for a life-saving transplant, and all over the globe, hundreds of patients lose lives every year, because they couldn’t find a donor in time. If you can find a transplant center near you, pay a visit to know the good work that’s being done. There are also charitable organizations, which are trying to connect donors with patients.
Organs and tissues that can be donated
Most organs can be considered for donation, such as heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, pancreas, and small intestine. Of all, liver and kidneys are the most-needed organs. Tissues can be transplanted too, including corneal tissue, skin, and bone marrow. Corneal transplantation is highly successful and requires very little recovery time. In fact, more than a million patients have got improved vision after successful corneal transplantation since 1961 in the US alone.
Religion, age, and other factors
There is no specific age to become an organ donor. You can consider to be an organ donor at any age. Most major religions also support organ donation, and this is considered as an act of kindness and compassion. If you still have your doubts, you can consider discussing with your religious advisor on organ donation. Keep in mind that saving the life of a patient is the foremost concern for medical professionals, and only when a person has irreversible brain injury, or is dead, he/she will be considered for donating organs. Since organ donation requires prompt action to save the organs, it is absolutely necessary to inform your family in advance, when you sign up to become a donor.
Other things to know
As an organ donor, you don’t have to pay for any expenses or other things. Also, there will be no financial cost to your family for the medical procedures following your death. Note that funerals are not delayed for the deceased because she/he is an organ donor. All the rituals can be done as per tradition, or wishes of the deceased.
If you want to become an organ donor, do your homework, inform your family, and make sure that you help organizations that are working for patients in need of transplants.