April is National Donate Life Month, when the AHA encourages everyone to consider becoming organ, eye and tissue donors.
The AHA every year joins Donate Life America and others in supporting National Donate Life Month. We hope you will join the association in supporting this nationwide campaign.
Nearly 121,000 people are waiting for lifesaving organ transplants in the United States. Thousands more need tissue or cornea transplants. That’s more than enough people to fill a large football stadium twice over.
In 2015, more than 14,000 donors provided the gift of life to more than 30,000 transplant recipients. Even with the tremendous generosity of these donors and their families, nearly 7,000 people on the waiting list died last year because the demand continues to outpace supply.
National Donate Life Month is sponsored by Donate Life America, an alliance of national organizations – including the AHA – and local coalitions dedicated to educating the public about donations. During National Donate Life Month, we celebrate those who have received or wait for lifesaving transplants, remember those who died waiting for their second chance at life, and thank those who have saved and improved lives through the gift of donation.
National Donate Life Month throughout April features local, regional and national activities to help encourage Americans to register as organ, eye and tissue donors and to celebrate those who have saved and improved lives through the gift of donation.
National Donate Life Month also is the perfect time to recognize the Workplace Partnership for Life (WPFL) Hospital Organ Donation Campaign. The AHA is proud to be one of the 10 national partners in this ongoing effort, launched in 2001 by the Health Resources and Services Administration.
As partners in the campaign, hundreds of America’s hospitals are committed to working toward the day when the wait list is measured in days and weeks, not months and years. They work with local organ procurement organizations within their communities or participate in statewide efforts led by their state hospital associations to promote donor awareness and enrollment activities.
Organ, eye and tissue donation remains a critical health care issue, and every hospital and health system leader should be promoting the cause throughout their organizations, in their local communities and at the national level. Many already are doing a great job of it – but we can always do more.