Organ transplant recipient is now an advocate for recruiting donors

Tom Jasinski talks about obstacles to registering as an organ donor in New York, which is second-to-last nationally in its number of registered donors (last is Puerto Rico). Jasinski started an organization to boost registration and donation after his experience as a transplant recipient.
BUFFALO NEWS | Henry Davis

When Tom Jasinski felt a slight pain in his chest and labored to breathe a few days before his wedding reception, he chalked it up to gaining weight.

So when he saw a doctor, just to be sure, his diagnosis came as a shock. His kidneys were failing.

Jasinski quickly found himself hooked up to a dialysis machine he would need for nearly four hours every other day to remove waste and fluids from his body until he got a new kidney.

He made it to the reception in a daze – his life turned upside down – and on the start of a long, anxious path toward an organ transplant. And that’s when he confronted a frustrating reality. A huge gap exists between the number of people who support organ donation and the number of people who register to be a donor.

New York State ranks 51st out of 52 donor registries, above only Puerto Rico, for the percentage of adults who are designated donors, according to the most recent survey by the advocacy group Donate Life America. Continue reading
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