Organ Donation: Five Things to Know

5 ways

More than 100,000 people in the United States are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant.

Sadly, while myths and misunderstandings about organ and tissue donations abound, 18 people – both kids and adults – die each day waiting for a life-saving transplant.

By becoming an organ and tissue donor, you can help save lives.

Here are five things you need to know about becoming an organ and tissue donor:

1. One donor can change 8 lives

One single organ and tissue donor can save or improve the lives of over 8 people, helping to restore eyesight, damaged tissues and vital functions.

2. Anyone can be a potential donor

Anyone can be a potential donor regardless of age, race or medical history. Donation professionals review medical history to determine if you can donate. With recent advances in transplantation, more people can donate than ever before.

3. Donating will not cost your family anything

There is no cost to a deceased donor's family for donating organs and tissues. All costs directly related to the organ donation are paid for by the organ procurement agency.

Hospital expenses incurred before the donation of organs, in attempts to save the donor's life, remain the responsibility of the donor's family. Families are also responsible for expenses related to a donor's funeral.

4. Make your intentions known

Signing a donor card is a great step but may not be enough to ensure that you'll be considered as a donor.

To become a donor, please register your wish in the Donate Life Today registry. You also need to share your decision with your family to ensure that your wishes are carried out.

5. Adults can be living donors

Adults can make living donations. This means that living adults can choose to give an organ (kidney) or part of an organ (liver) to someone in need.

You can make a difference

Visit Donate Life Today to learn more about becoming an organ and tissue donor.

More to Explore: Seattle Children's Transplant Stories

Seattle Children's has been a consistent leader among national pediatric transplant centers. We are committed to providing optimal growth and quality of life for your child – and helping your entire family return to a normal, active life.

Learn more about Seattle Children's Transplant Center and discover the stories of our transplant patients.