Monday, October 01, 2007

Transplant Headlines

Here a a few selected organ and tissue donation and transplant headlines from around the world.

Organ-donor campaigner fumes at register setback
The New Zealand Hearald published a report on the Government's decision not to establish a donor register.

"The push to improve New Zealand's organ donation rates has had a setback after Parliament's health select committee recommended against establishing a donor register.

The committee yesterday approved the Government's Human Tissue Bill governing the legal framework for informed consent for organ donation, but a majority recommended against establishing a donor registry." Read the full article.

Family's experience leads to new N.C. law on organ donations
The Star News in North Carolina tells about how a potential organ donor's organs were not donated because authorities could not contact his family for their consent in time. Now, a new law allows people to indicate their wish to be an organ donor on their driver's license by means of a heart symbol.

North Carolina drivers can get the symbol on their licenses by signing up as organ donors with the DMV, but until now, the symbol represented only the intent to donate and did not have any legally binding authority. The new law takes effect Oct. 1, meaning doctors can immediately begin the process of organ recovery if someone who dies has the heart symbol on his or her license. Read the article.

State leads nation in organ donations
The Dunn County News in Wisconsin has an article noting that Wisconsin lead the U. S. in organ donations in 2006. It reviews the state's initiatives to promote organ donation and I was especially impressed to learn that for the last 14 years, Wisconsin governors have hosted the Gift of Life Medal Ceremony to give transplant recipients the opportunity to express their appreciation to organ donor families and encourage even more of Wisconsin’s citizens to sign their drivers’ license and indicate their willingness to become organ and tissue donors. (Ontario is having a similar ceremony this month that I will be attending.) Read the story.

Learning about organ donation
From the U.K. comes an article in the Sunderland Echo noting that schoolchildren across Wearside and Durham are being offered a special lesson in life aimed at highlighting the need for blood, organ, tissue, and bone marrow donors.

Five Sunderland schools and one school in Durham have signed up for the Give and Let Live programme – designed to teach teenagers about various forms of donation.

Schools will be delivering the programme to 14 to 16-year-olds using the resource in personal, social and health education (PSHE) and citizenship classes. One school is using the programme in regligious classes.

Mike Simpson, head of RE, citizenship and PSHE at the school, said: "Our curriculum for key stage four covers a lot of moral issues, and one of those is organ donation –and this programme will add to that."

The Give and Let Live programme, run by NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT), includes a teachering pack and a website including lesson plans, activity sheets, real life stories, debating topics, games, films and other activities. More than 1,000 schools across the U.K. have signed on to the programme. Read the full story.

“You Have the Power to Save Lives – Sign Your Donor Card & Tell Your Loved Ones of Your Decision”

Download Donor Cards from Trillium Gift of Life Network

Download Donor Cards from OrganDonor.Gov

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