New York Organ Donor Network Aims to Increase Registry Sign-Ups During National Donate Life Month
|A key focus is to sign into law an electronic signature in New York for the New York State Donate Life Registry for organ, eye and tissue donation. A major event is the unveiling of a "Flowers for Life" garden at the New York Botanical Garden.|
“Save lives. Sign up to be an organ donor.” That is the message from the New York Organ Donor Network during April’s National Donate Life Month.
The lynchpin of the Donor Network’s campaign is to urge New York State to pass a law enabling New Yorkers to register online and sign electronically to become organ donors. Currently, 45 states allow electronic signatures for donation registries – not New York. That tragically leads to lives being unnecessarily being lost.
At the same time, the Donor Network is calling upon New Yorkers to add their names to the New York State Donate Life Registry for organ, eye and tissue donation. The registry is a confidential database administered by the New York State Department of Health.
Despite a 14 percent increase in organ donation from deceased donors in 2009, New York's registry has just two million names -- 13 percent of the population age 18 and over. Many other states have higher registry numbers; it is not uncommon for states to have 60 percent or more of their population registered as organ donors.
“The singular goal for National Donate Life Month is to have thousands of individuals age 18 and over add their names to the New York State Donate Life Registry,” said Elaine Berg, president and CEO of the Donor Network.
“I am sure that as New Yorkers, we can agree that trailing the nation in terms of registrations is completely unacceptable. Donate Life Month offers us the opportunity to turn the situation around by flooding the registry with signatures.”
With nearly 10,000 people statewide awaiting organ transplants, the organ procurement organization is hoping that a series of programs and events in April throughout the greater New York metropolitan area will lead to a series of successful organ donor drives.
A major event in New York City is “Remember and Rejoice,” the 15th Annual Ecumenical Service at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, scheduled for Saturday, April 10 at 2 p.m. The service, hosted by the Manhattan Chapter of Transplant Recipients International, is open to the general public
On Tuesday, April 27, members of the Donate Life Greater New York coalition will travel to Albany to participate in a public education day, in conjunction with the New York Alliance on Donation and donation groups upstate. One of the objectives is to impress upon elected officials the importance of passing legislation that will permit an electronic signature to register consent to make an anatomical gift in New York State.
An event of note is the unveiling by the New York Organ Donor Network and Montefiore Medical Center of a “Flowers for Life” garden in honor of organ, eye and tissue donors at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx, on Wednesday, April 28 at 11 a.m.
Throughout April, a donor drive will take place in Orange County, supported by County Executive Ed Diana. As a part of the program, around 3,000 county employees will receive materials about donation with their paychecks
New Yorkers can enroll in the New York State Donate Life Registry on the New York Organ Donor Network's website: http://www.DonateLifeNY.org
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The New York Organ Donor Network serves the greater New York metropolitan area. The federally designated organ procurement organization coordinates donation for transplantation, and educates healthcare professionals and the public about donation.