Today, there are over 114,000people in the United States waiting for lifesaving organ transplants who areregistered with the United Network for Organ Sharing on transplant waiting lists. A million more suffer conditions that can be successfully treated with donated corneas or tissue.
At the end of 2009, 86.3 million people were enrolled in state donor registries, representing 37.1 percent of U.S. residents age 18 and older.
Every year, over 6,000 people die while waiting for organ transplants.
In 1988, 4,080 people donated organs after death. In 2009, that number has nearly doubled to 8,021.
In 1988, organs were donated by 1,829 living donors. In 2009, that number reached 6,610.
One individual who donates after death can provide organs, corneas, skin, bone and tissue for 50 or more people in need.
In 2009, there were 28,464 organ transplants performed in the United States.
An estimated 1.5 million Americans are treated with transplanted bone and tissue each year. Tissues include tendons and ligaments, skin used to treat burns, heart valves and corneas to restore sight.
About 46,000 cornea transplants are performed annually, with more than 5,000 people waiting for donated corneas.
The largest number of children who need organ transplants are waiting for kidney donations.
There are currently more than 28,900 African Americans waiting for kidney transplants nationwide. Although 12% of the US population is African-Americans, they comprise 35% of the national kidney transplant waiting list. Because of specific medical conditions, including diabetes and high blood pressure, African-Americans suffer a disproportionately high rate of End Stage Renal Disease (kidney failure).
There is no cost to be an organ and tissue donor. Donation is a gift.
A challenge we still face is that 52 percent of people incorrectly believe that doctors may not try as hard to save their lives if their wish to be an organ or tissue donor is known.*
A sign of hope is that a majority of U.S. adults now wish to be organ or tissue donors – 56 percent versus 50 percent in 2009.*
Your decision to be an organ and tissue donor canmake a difference in as many as 50 lives throughout Connecticut and across the nation. Right now, tens of thousands of people are awaiting life-saving organ transplants, while thousands more are in need of tissue and corneal transplants. The shortage of donors is so severe that every day 18 people die waiting for organs that could have saved their lives. Saying "yes" to organ and tissue donation is an important decision for everyone: you, your family, and the over 1,240 Connecticut residents who are currently waiting for organs. You can give the gift of hope simply by registering to become a donor.