NATIONAL DONATE LIFE AWARENESS MONTH
National Donate Life Awareness Month in April recognizes the impact of organ donation. The month is dedicated not only to improving support to those desperately waiting for life-saving donations but honors those who agreed to be donors.
Organ donation takes many forms, and there are teams of people involved to make donation happen. A single donation requires a coordinated effort from family members supporting both donors and recipients to a broad network of advocates and medical professionals and specialists.
Types of Donation
Deceased – Donors or their next of kin determine whether their organs will be donated at the time of their death.
Living – Some organs or tissue may be donated by a living donor. Types of organs and tissue donated include kidneys, liver, and bone marrow.
Vascularized Composite Allografts (VCA) – This type of donation may not save a life, but can improve a patient’s quality of life. The types of tissue or organs donated include skin, muscles, nerves and other connective tissue.
One organ donor can save upt to Eight lives. – UNOS
Donors and recipients require access to physical, medical, and financial support before and after the donation. Improving the knowledge stream regarding donation will increase awareness and the conditions surrounding donation. According to UNOS, every 10 minutes someone is added to the national transplant waiting list. The more donors registered, the more lives are saved.
HOW TO OBSERVE #DonateLifeAwarenessMonth
- Learn about organ donation.
- Share stories about organ donation.
- Visit organdonor.gov, unos.gov, and americantransplantfoundation.org to learn more.
- Use #DonateLifeAwarenessMonth to share your story on social media.
NATIONAL DONATE LIFE AWARENESS MONTH HISTORY
Once observed as a week-long celebration, National Donate Life Awareness Month spread throughout April in 2003. Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson extended the observance to increase awareness about tissue and organ donation. Since then each U.S. President makes a special proclamation recognizing the continued need for research, outreach, and support.