The ability to transplant organs and tissues is one of the greatest success stories of modern medicine. Thanks to organ donation, many people with life-threatening illnesses can look forward to a future and a second chance at life. Many others can experience a better quality of life through donated tissues such as corneas, skin, bone, and heart valves.
Facts about organ and tissue donation: Did you know?
- One (1) organ donor can save up to eight (8) lives with the gift of a heart, pancreas, intestines, liver, 2 lungs and 2 kidneys.
- One (1) eye and tissue donor can enhance the lives of as many as 75 people with gifts such as skin grafts after burns or heart valves for children with congenital heart defects.
- In 2021, more than 41,000 transplants from 20,300 donors brought renewed life to patients and their families and communities.
- More than 85,600 corneal transplants help to restore sight each year.
Turning a time of loss into a time of hope
Most organ transplants come from deceased donors and the loss of a family member or loved one is a tragic time. Yet, many family members of recently deceased registered donors feel comforted that their loss can also bring hope to another family—saving up to eight other families from experiencing the same grief.
Organ and tissue donation can help give more meaning to the loss we experience when a family member passes. In this way, registering as an organ donor is not just the gift of life or gift of health for dozens of others, it is also the gift of comfort to your own family.
Act now to give those in need a better future
Every day, more people are added to the US transplant waiting list, with 100,000 people currently waiting for lifesaving organ transplants, while the number of donors grows much more slowly.
On average 17 people die each day in the US while waiting for a matching organ donation. The conditions that make organ and tissue donations possible are rare, so it is vitally important that as many people as possible register as donors, including seniors and children.
We never know when an accident or stroke might affect our family and offer the opportunity for donation—or if someone we love will need an organ or tissue donation.
Take the simple action today to give the gift of life if you are able. Please register as an organ and tissue donor today with New England Donor Services.
While most organ donors in New Hampshire sign up as part of the driver’s license process (check for a red heart on the bottom right of your license), registering via NEDS.org allows you to designate specific organs or tissues you wish not to donate. We recommend any registered donor talk to their family about their decision to donate.
- How the gift of life works infographic (PDF)
- Donation and Transplantation: How Does it Work (Video)?
- Life Stories
Donation and Mutation: Where do you find comfort after the death of a child? In this episode, we follow one couple as they discover a sense of purpose in an unlikely place: a clinical world where human parts are used for research. In this surprising journey, Ross and Sarah Gray gain a view of science that is redemptive, fussy facts that are tender, and parts of a loved one that add up to something unexpected.
Grey’s Donation: Before he was even born, Sarah and Ross knew that their son Thomas wouldn’t live long. But as they let go of him, they made a decision that reverberated through a world that they never bothered to think about. They managed to meet the people and places for whom Thomas’ short life was an altogether different kind of gift. Since we first aired this segment, some exciting things have happened in the Gray's world. Our producer Tracie Hunte sat down with Sarah Gray to get the low-down on what's new.