Each year, about 8,000 people die waiting for an organ transplant, and just one donor can save and heal up to 75 lives through organ and tissue donation. Today, there are more than 120,000 patients waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant and many more who need cornea, tissue, bone marrow, blood, and platelet donations.
There are 2 ways to become a donor:
- Deceased organ donors – can donate both kidneys, liver, both lungs, heart, pancreas, and intestines.
- Living organ donor – can donate one kidney, one lung, or a portion of the liver, pancreas, or intestines.
Over 80% of people on the transplant list need a kidney transplant, usually due to permanent kidney failure or End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Medicare covers kidney transplants for both the person getting the transplant and the donor. If you’re getting the transplant, you pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount for doctor services. You pay nothing if you’re the living donor.
National Donor Day is February 14th. Give the gift of life this Valentine’s Day, and sign up to be an organ donor.