An eye for an I

I must admit, I don’t like thinking too hard about disease and injury. Yes, hospitals make me uneasy. The thought of surgery makes me squeamish. The details of my death are something I figure I can ignore. And I’ve had the good fortune of decent health and a relatively accident-free existence. Lucky me. But I’m feeling quite proud of myself of late. I finally got round to looking my internal organs in the eye, as it were, and registering as an organ donor.

It’s easy – you can register online, they send you the stickers to put on your ID and driver’s licence, you let your family know, and that’s it. There are currently 3 000 South Africans awaiting organs for transplants that could save their lives. Because of shortages of organs, fewer than 1 in 3 of them will receive those transplants.
This from the Organ Donor Foundation’s website:

Research has shown that organ donation is acceptable to the majority of South Africans and contrary to popular belief, a grieving family takes great comfort from the knowledge that they are able to help others through the donation of their loved one’s organs and tissues.

With excellent long-term survival rates of over 80%, transplantation can no longer be considered experimental and is accepted as the treatment of choice for most patients with end-stage disease.

I’m not going to apologise for the proselytising tone of this post. Sometime, when you need an eye, a kidney or a heart, I really want to know that you’re going to get one. The only way that can happen is for more people to get the little red sticker.

South Africa: http://www.odf.org.za
UK: http://www.uktransplant.org.uk
Europe: http://www.transplant.org
USA: http://www.shareyourlife.org



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About Lisa

I live in South Africa with my husband and two small children, doing things, thinking about things and sometimes writing about them.
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2 Responses to An eye for an I

  1. Lisa says:

    Uh, thanks to Mike O.R. for pointing out the stupidity of scanning in an entire ID document onto a public site. Won’t do that again in a hurry.

  2. Alex says:

    Great stuff Lisa. I think giving back is the best option. What use are your organs to you when you are dead?

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