National Donate Life month is celebrated each year in April. Many seniors often think that they are not eligible to be organ donors because of their age. This is not always the case. There is no age limit on organ donation. People in their 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and even older have been donors and recipients. Do not rule yourself out.
- 1 out of every 3 organ donors was over the age of 50.
- To date the oldest organ donor was 93 years old.
- 60% of the people who received an organ transplant were older than 50.
- Almost 19% of organ recipients were 65 or older.
Who Can Donate?
Everyone of every age can consider themselves a potential donor regardless of their age, health, race or ethnicity. You are never too old or too young. Doctors will decide if you are eligible to be a donor. Donation of organs is the ultimate gift that someone can provide for another person. Many more seniors are now becoming donors. This always helps to shorten the long lists of people that are waiting for the gift of life.
What can be donated?
- Deceased organ donors can donate these organs: kidneys, lungs, heart, liver, pancrease, & intestines.
- Living organ donors can donate: 1 kidney, 1 lung, portion of the liver, pancreas or intestine.
- Hands & face
- Blood stem cells, cord blood or bone marrow
- Blood and platelets
Many of us do not think about organ donation unless it becomes a part of our own lives. So many people are living lives waiting day to day and for years often, in hopes that an organ will become available for them. Giving the gift of life is a very generous thing and should be thoroughly thought out. Most importantly, once your decision is made you should also make your wishes known to your loved ones and family members. This will ensure that when that time comes that hopeful person on the receiving end can live on through your memory and your greatest gift without delay.
“Don’t take your organs to heaven, heaven knows we need them here.” ~ Maxie Scully