Become an organ or tissue donor

Many of us know or have been touched by someone who has had a transplant or is in need of one.

Many of us know or have been touched by someone who has had a transplant or is in need of one. Organ donations are among the most miraculous achievements of modern medicine, but depend entirely on the generosity of donors and their families willing to give this life-saving or life-enhancing gift.

Did you know the oldest organ donor on record in B.C. was 93 years of age? In every region and every age category, there are thousands of British Columbians waiting for an organ transplant right now. If you are already a registered organ donor, you could one day save someone’s life — or, save many lives.

A single donor can save up to eight lives through organ donation. Even if your organs can’t be used, it’s likely you can be a tissue donor, giving anything from corneas to heart valves to a recipient in need. Through tissue donation, up to 50 lives can be dramatically improved by just one donor.

Our government has partnered with BC Transplant to make registering your decision on organ donation easier than ever before. There are now 61 Service BC centres located in B.C., including Quesnel, where you can do just that. Participating centres have friendly staff on hand to provide information about organ donation and answer any questions you may have before registering your decision. You can visit or contact my office at 1-866-991-0296 for more information on becoming an organ donor, or for assistance with forms. You can also visit the B.C. Transplant website at www.transplant.bc.ca. More than 95 per cent of British Columbians support organ donation but only 19 per cent have registered. With close to 500 people on the transplant waiting list, signing up to become an organ donor could help save the life of a neighbour, co-worker, friend or family member in need. Organ transplants are truly life transforming, and donating organs is a selfless act that brings hope out of loss — giving the precious gift of life to someone in need.

Coralee Oakes is the MLA for Cariboo North and is the Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development.

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