Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (D-Endwell) is teaming up with other state and national leaders in urging New Yorkers to learn more about organ and tissue donation during National Donate Life Month, and to add their names to the New York State Organ and Tissue Donor Registry as indication of their intent to donate. This national observance is an effort to help raise public awareness of the critical need for organ, tissue, bone marrow, and blood donation.
According to Lupardo, "Nationally, the current waiting list for organs has reached almost 87,000. Every 13 minutes another person is added to the list and an average of 17 people die each day waiting. In New York alone, the number waiting for a transplant is approximately 8,000. In 2003, just 353 New Yorkers donated lifesaving organs at the time of their death, an additional 522 were living donors. Nationally in 2003, 6,457 people donated at the time of their deaths and 6,821 people became living donors that year. Living donors now outnumber those donating life at the time of their death. There were over 3,000 tissue and eye donors in 2003, which resulted in approximately 15,000 life saving or enhancing transplants in New York. It is critical for New Yorkers to improve the donation rate. By donating at the time of their death, a single person may help as many as 50 people."
New Yorkers interested in becoming a donor can sign up for the Registry by calling 1-866-NYDONOR (1-866-693-6667) or by visiting www.heath.state.ny.us and clicking on the "Life Pass It On" logo.