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Children's Hospital Receives Top Honor for Organ Donation

October 16, 2006

Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center will receive the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Medal of Honor for Organ Donation on Oct. 19, 2006 at the second annual Organ Donation Breakthrough Collaborative National Learning Congress.

Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center will receive the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Medal of Honor for Organ Donation on Oct. 19, 2006 at the second annual Organ Donation Breakthrough Collaborative National Learning Congress. The Medal of Honor recognizes those who have made extraordinary contributions to the field of organ donation. Children’s is the only pediatric hospital in the Pacific Northwest receiving this award.

“The hospitals and organ procurement organizations receiving this award are being honored for their exemplary leadership and commitment to donors, donor families and the multitude of patients on the transplant waiting list,” said Diana Clark, president and CEO of LifeCenter Northwest, this region’s federally designated organ donation organization. “We are thrilled to work with Children’s, an exemplary medical center that is so dedicated to making organ donation a successful part of children’s healthcare.”

When someone dies, hospitals and organ procurement organizations (OPOs) work with families to help them cope with their loss and realize the wish of their loved one to save another’s life through organ donation. Those hospitals and OPOs who collaborated most successfully in providing these services to their patients were rewarded with this year’s Organ Donation Medal of Honor.

“The transplant team at Children’s is committed to improving access to organs for children with life-threatening illnesses,” said Dr. Jorge Reyes, director, Transplant Services at Children’s. “Many of our transplant doctors and surgeons are members of the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) and other national transplant organizations to ensure that organ donation policy and advancements best represent the needs of children.”

More than 90,000 people in the United States are currently awaiting a life-saving organ transplant, including almost 2,000 children. Each day, 18 of these people die due to the shortage of organs. In 2005, 53 children received transplanted organs in the six-state region served by children’s (Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington). One person can potentially save or enhance the lives of up to 50 people, so registering to donate is important. There are three easy ways to register as a donor in Washington:

  • Register online at www.livinglegacyregistry.org
  • Call toll-free at 1-877-275-5269 and request a brochure to fill out and return.
  • Say ‘yes’ to organ donation when renewing your driver’s license. Residents who already have a heart or the word DONOR on their driver’s license are automatically added to the Living Legacy Registry.

About Seattle Children's Hospital

Consistently ranked as one of the best children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Children’s serves as the pediatric and adolescent academic medical referral center for the largest landmass of any children’s hospital in the country (Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho). For more than 100 years, Children’s has been delivering superior patient care and advancing new treatments through pediatric research. Children’s serves as the primary teaching, clinical and research site for the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine. The hospital works in partnership with Seattle Children’s Research Institute and Seattle Children’s Hospital Foundation. For more information, visit http://www.seattlechildrens.org.

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