April was designated as Donate Life Month in 2003; however, it was previously celebrated as a week long awareness event starting back in 1983. Increased awareness about organ donation could potentially save the lives of the estimated 20 people a day that die while waiting for an organ donation.
The CDC estimates that on any given day there are approximately 75,000 individuals on the waiting list for organs but the demand far exceeds the supply. Numbers show that 95% of adults support organ donation but yet only 54% are actually signed up to donate. One organ donor can save up to eight lives!
There are two types of donors: living and deceased. Deceased donors make up the majority of donated organs. Living donors donate a kidney more frequently than other organs but they have also donated part of a liver, pancreas, lung, intestine and some tissues. Very few issues prevent someone from donating an organ so factors such as age, religion, and most illnesses are typically not going to rule someone out.
There are two ways to register to donate, either online or at your local motor vehicle department. You can also learn more by visiting one of these websites: