Today is the beginning of DonateLife Week 2017… a week that is all about promoting organ and tissue donation, with the aim of increasing donation levels and transplantation outcomes…
Currently, there are more than 1,400 Australians and their families are today waiting for a life-saving transplant.
My husband was once one of those waiting…he waited 14 months for a donor liver.
If he had had to have waited much longer, he would not have survived.
Improving organ and tissue donation, as well as transplantation outcomes, means more lives can be saved…and quality of life improved.
My husband not only got his life and good health back…he has also thrived!
He has gone from sleeping 16 hours a day and feeling awful, to running cross country events!
In fact yesterday, he took part in a 15km run in difficult conditions, proudly wearing his long sleeve DonateLife top under his team singlet….
As I watch him run, I find it hard to believe that he is the same person as he was just over 5 years ago…someone who was dying…
Without a donor liver, he would have not made it…it is a simple as that.
We are forever grateful that a family somewhere, made the decision to allow organ donation, and my husband and others got their second chance…the very precious gift of life.
Are you registered…not sure about it all?
Here are a couple of facts that might change your mind…
You are more likely to need a transplant then ever become a donor, hence the need for more donors to be registered.
And to eventually become an organ donor, you have die in a very specific way…they must be in hospital, usually in ICU.
In fact, only about 1% of people die in such a way….that is a scary reality if you are on a waiting list.
But I should emphasise that donors do not die to save others…they are on their own journey, often tragically.
Medical staff do everything possible to save lives and their first duty is to their patient and saving their life.
Organ and tissue donation will only be considered after all efforts failed and death has been declared or is inevitable.
Now take a moment to imagine if you or a loved one were waiting for a donor organ or tissue?
Believe me, it is a very stressful and frustrating experience…not something I would wish on anyone.
Basically you just have to wait…and wait…
If there were no organ and tissue donors, there would be no hope for people like my husband.
So why register?
If the situation arises where organ donation is a possibility, your family will be asked to give consent.
By registering, you are confirming your decision to allow organ donation.
However please be aware that in Australia, your family can still overrule this…so it is also very important to discuss your choice with family and loved ones so they know.
Don’t put it off…most people who become donors die suddenly, and their family has to make a decision without knowing what their loved one’s wishes are.
Which then makes a very difficult and upsetting situation even worse.
You can now register quickly and easily using an online form – click here to go to the website…do it now and it’s done!
Then talk to your family…do it tonight!
Keep an eye out for the various events and promotions during the week…you can check out whats on via the DonateLife website.
We usually volunteer at the hospital where my husband had his transplant during DonateLife Week but sadly, they are apparently not having a display table this year.
However, we will continue to spread the word about how important organ donation is wherever we can throughout this week…and always!
If you have any questions about organ donation or liver transplants, please do not hesitate to contact us!