Reported by: Liz Bryant; firstname.lastname@example.org
It's the gift of life that keeps on giving. Organ donation gives new hope to a dying patient. Tonight, we will hear from a recipient who would have died without a donation. The man's most vital organ was only days away from giving out. But thanks to one family's decision, he now has a new outlook on life.
"I got to see my daughter go to her first prom last week. Four years ago, I never thought that would have been possible." Pierre Jason was staring death in the face, in desperate need of a new heart.
18 years ago Jason was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. And in 2007, his situation was "do or die", he received a new heart and the gift of more time with his daughter. "After the transplant I had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude. I just get my energy from people now" says, Pierre. He waited 90 days for his heart. And all the sudden, in his late 50's Pierre started cooking, sewing- domestic items he never accomplished before. "My wife thinks i have a female valley girl heart because I like to shop."
Jason has a new life thanks to someone's donation. The decision can be gut wrenching for some family members going through the shock of an unexpected death. Merry Dye experienced it after the death of her daughter Mariah. "For a second, it feels like its a meat market and they're just trying to push through organs. And that was difficult. But you just have to look at what the overall benefit of it" says, Dye. With every death, hospitals are required to contact organ procurement organizations. Procurement staff members then arrive at the hospital to see if family members would like to donate their loved ones organs. If so, the only way to recover organs is to keep the patients heart beating. Multiple tests are administered to make sure the organs are okay. Then the recovery is accomplished. "If you think that giving apart of your body to someone else that needs it is gross, or whatever, think twice. You could be saving someone else's life" says, Jason.
Approximately 85% of all organs that are recovered are actually transplanted.An average of 15 people each day pass away while waiting for a transplant. "I have a heart of a hero. Who ever he or she is, I'm eternally grateful."
More than 100,000 people in our nation are on the waiting list for a life-saving transplant. Midwest Transplant Network is the organ harvest agency for our area. For more information visit:
www.donatelifemissouri.com for Missouri residents and www.donatelifekansas.com for Kansas residents.
follow them on Twitter @mwtransplant or browse their website at www.mwtn.org.