WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- April is Donate Life Month, and Westchester Medical Center is encouraging New York residents to register as an organ or tissue donor.
“One person who donates their organs (hearts, lungs, liver, kidneys, pancreas and intestines) can save up to eight lives,” said Eileen Farrington, RN, director of transplant services at Westchester Medical Center. “A tissue donor (corneas, bone, skin, heart valves, tendons, veins, etc.) can improve 12 or more lives by restoring eyesight or helping to fight infections or preventing disability or the loss of mobility in burn patients.”
The Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network reports nearly 11,000 New York residents are on waiting lists for organ transplants. There are 8,775 people awaiting a kidney transplant, 1,400 awaiting a liver transplant and 350 people awaiting a heart transplant in New York, according to a news release by Westchester Medical Center.
Statistics show as many as 700 people die in New York each year while waiting for organ donations.
For more information about organ and tissue donation and to enroll online in the New York state Organ and Tissue Donor Registry, visit the New York Organ Donor Network at www.hatethewait.org. Additional resources can be found by visiting the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services at w ww.hrsa.gov or the United Network for Organ Sharing at www.unos.org.