Letter: Organ donor registration goes up

We increased the number of organ donors registered in Kelowna from 33,521 at the end of 2014 to 37,033 at the end of 2015.

To the editor:

On behalf of B.C. Transplant we want to thank the residents of Kelowna for increasing the numbers of registered organ donors by over 3,500 in 2015.

I am a liver transplant recipient (2013) and now volunteer with B.C. Transplant to increase organ donor awareness in the Kelowna area. With our efforts, we increased the number of organ donors registered in Kelowna from 33,521 at the end of 2014 to 37,033 at the end of 2015. Thank you Kelowna!  Our thanks as well to London Drugs in Kelowna which is a great supporter of our efforts.

But our work is never done.  As of March 1, 2016 there were more than 575 patients waiting for an organ transplant in our province.  To that date 78 organ transplants had been performed, but still 575 were waiting to get the great news that a donor had been found. Over 30 per cent of these patients will die before they get a transplant.

National Organ And Tissue Donation Awareness Week is April 17 to 23  in Canada and you will again see and hear lots of articles on the National Registration Drive with Liveon.ca that is  known as “48 in 48.” It’s aim is to encourage 48,000 Canadian residents to talk about and register their organ donation decision in 48 hours on April 18 and 19. Watch TV to see the Green Ribbon Light Campaign at which time major Canadian landmarks will light up green or fly a green ribbon flag in support of organ donation. In B.C. these landmarks include the Canada Sails at BC Place, Telus World of Science and Vancouver City Hall.

The goal for B.C. Transplant in 2016 is to reach one million donors, and we are asking you to consider registering your decision at the website www.transplant.bc.ca.

Give the Gift of Life and leave a legacy for those who follow.

Marilyn Byfield, coordinator

Okanagan Pre and Post Organ Transplant Support Group,

Kelowna