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April is National Donate Life Month

April is National Donate Life Month

April is National Donate Life month. The number of people in need of transplants continues to outpace the number of donor organs. According to the Department of U.S. Health and Human Services, 123,351 people are waiting for an organ; approximately 21 people will die each day waiting for an organ; and 1 organ donor can save up to 8 lives.

Last year alone, organ donors made more than 28,000 transplants possible. Another one million people received cornea and other tissue transplants that helped them recover from trauma, bone damage, spinal injuries, burns, hearing impairment and vision loss.

Making the decision to be an organ donor gives a second chance at life for thousands of people each year. The most important thing to do once you decide to be a donor, is to sign up as an organ and tissue donor in your state’s donor registry. It is also helpful to designate your decision on your driver’s license; tell you family, physician, faith leader and friends about your decision; and include your donation in your advance directives, will and living will.

For more information about donating, visit organdonor.gov, mwtn.org, or donatelife.net. To sign up to be an organ donor, visit www.missouriorgandonor.com. To speak with someone local, Ozarks Medical Center has an organ and tissue donation coordinator on staff. Contact Addy van Os Keuls at 417-256-9111, ext. 6150, or email addy.vanoskeuls@ozarksmedicalcenter.com.

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