Raleigh General Promotes Organ Donation

April 17, 2018

In recognition of National Donate Life Month, medical centers are working to raise awareness and to register more organ, tissue and cornea donors. 

According to a release, 115,000 people nationwide are waiting for an organ transplant, including 2,500 in western Pennsylvania and West Virginia. At least 20 will die each day without receiving the transplant they need. Someone is added to the transplant waiting list every 10 minutes.

Both Raleigh General Hospital and Beckley VA Medical Center are joining the Center for Organ Recovery & Education (CORE) to raise awareness and to inspire everyone to consider becoming a donor.

“Donate Life Month provides an opportunity to remind ourselves of what heroes look like,” said Susan Stuart, president and CEO of CORE. “They are the sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, who — through organ, tissue and cornea donation — gave life and offered healing to others.

“They are the 115,000 people who are waiting for a life-saving transplant, yearning for more time with their loved ones. We also recognize the health care professionals, our hospital heroes, who — through their hard work, ingenuity and compassion — provide the precious gift of life to so many in our area.”

Matt Roberts, CEO of Raleigh General Hospital, said the hospital’s close collaboration with CORE “sets the gift of life in motion.”

“That process starts with creating a culture of donation within our hospital and includes being donation champions — raising awareness about the vital importance of registering as organ, tissue and cornea donors,” Roberts said. 

About 11,000 people die annually who are considered medically suitable to donate organs, tissue and corneas, yet only a fraction donate. Anyone can be a potential donor regardless of age, race or medical history.

To sign up, visit core.org/register

Beckley VA Medical Center will host a flag-raising ceremony at 10 a.m. Thursday to honor recipients and donors. The ceremony will be in the VA auditorium. Two guest speakers — both VA employees and organ transplant recipients — will speak.

A similar ceremony will be at 2 p.m. April 24 at Raleigh General in front of the hospital. 

By Wendy Holdren, The Register Herald