AAMC Celebrates ‘Donate Life’ Month

| April 18, 2012
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With more than 112,000 people nationwide waiting for a life-saving organ transplant, including nearly 2,000 people in Maryland, the need for designated organ, eye and tissue donors has reached an all-time high.  And sadly, on average 18 people on that national waiting list die every day due to the lack of available organs for transplant.

To help bring awareness to this growing healthcare crisis, Anne Arundel Medical Center (AAMC) has partnered with The Living Legacy Foundation of Maryland (LLF) to provide employees and members of our community information about the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation. AAMC has enjoyed a strong relationship for many years with The Living Legacy Foundation of Maryland, a federally designated organ procurement organization dedicated to saving lives by facilitating the process of organ and tissue donation, recovery and transplantation.

AAMC has a multidisciplinary organ donation council whose members include physicians, nursing staff and employees from across the hospital.  In 2011, AAMC facilitated three successful organ donations resulting in 11 lives saves, while many more tissue, bone and cornea donations were retrieved from registered donors.

During National Donate Life Month, The Living Legacy Foundation urges health care professionals, volunteers, educators, community groups, private organizations and the public at large to make a special effort to celebrate the tremendous generosity of those who have saved lives by becoming organ, eye and tissue donors and to raise awareness for the urgent need for life-saving organs and tissue.

“Last year, the national waiting list reached more than 112,000 people and the gap between those who are waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant and registered designated donors keeps widening every year,” said Charlie Alexander, president and CEO of The Living Legacy Foundation of Maryland. “One of our goals is to provide advocacy and comprehensive public and professional education to help increase the number of designated organ donors throughout the state.”

“National Donate Life Month is an opportunity to publicly recognize the profound generosity of donors and their families who have offered the gift of life to others while experiencing a personal loss of a loved one,” said Michelle Donovan, Coordinator for Organ Donation, AAMC. “We are proud of the gifts of life to others that have been achieved through our support and commitment to organ and tissue donation.”

Additionally, this year, Donate Life America, the national organization promoting organ, eye and tissue donation, launched a bold new initiative to register 20 million people in 2012 on their state donor registries. “With the majority of individuals in the United States wishing to be organ, eye and tissue donors, the biggest challenge to meeting our goal of 20 million will be getting people to take action and register today as an organ, eye and tissue donors,” said David Fleming, President and CEO of Donate Life America.

AAMC is committed to helping reduce the number of people waiting for a life-saving transplant by providing our employees with information about donation and transplantation. This will allow everyone to make an educated decision about becoming a designated organ and tissue donor.  For more information on organ, eye and tissue donation please visit the Donate Life Maryland website at www.donatelifemaryland.org or call 866-MD-DONOR.

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Category: Businesses, LIFE IN THE AREA, Local News, NEWS, Non Profit Organizations

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Eye On Annapolis is a community based site focusing strictly on Anne Arundel County. These staff postings are general news postings made by our team of bloggers throughout the day and are not attributed to any one particular staff person.
  • David J Undis

    Your story about Organ Donation highlighted the tragic shortage of human organs for transplant operations.
     
    There are now over 113,000 people on the National Transplant Waiting List, with over 50% of these people dying before they get a transplant.   Most of these deaths are needless.  Americans bury or cremate 20,000 transplantable organs every year.
     
    There is a simple way to put a big dent in the organ shortage – give donated organs first to people who have agreed to donate their own organs when they die.
     
    Giving organs first to organ donors will convince more people to register as organ donors.  It will also make the organ allocation system fairer.  Everyone who is willing to receive should be willing to give.
     
    Anyone who wants to donate their organs to others who have agreed to donate theirs can join LifeSharers.  LifeSharers is a non-profit network of organ donors who agree to offer their organs first to other organ donors when they die.  Membership is free at http://www.lifesharers.org or by calling
    1-888-ORGAN88.  There is no age limit, parents can enroll their minor children, and no one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition.  LifeSharers has over 15,000 members as of this writing, including 256 members in Maryland.
     
    Please contact me – Dave Undis, Executive Director of LifeSharers – if your readers would like to learn more about our innovative approach to increasing the number of organ donors.  I can arrange interviews with some of our local members if you’re interested.  My email address is daveundis@lifesharers.org.  My phone number is 615-351-8622.