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Have a heart this Organ Donor Day

Kelsey Bundra
Features Writer

Widely known for Valentine’s Day, February 14 also shares a date with National Organ Donor Day. Organ donation gives hope and life to those in need. Due to its supposed morbid nature, organ donation faces many misconceptions. People often do not consider donating organs because they are scared off by the misunderstandings associated with the process. Living people can still make donations, there is no age limit, and certain medical conditions do not prevent a person from donating.
It is difficult to contemplate such a difficult decision while still alive. There is much to think about before signing up to become a donor, but the first step is proper education. People can donate body tissues and a kidney while still alive.

February 14, also known for Valentine’s Day, happens to be National Organ Donor Day.
February 14, also known for Valentine’s Day, happens to be National Organ Donor Day.

Do not rule yourself out based on misconceptions. According to organdonor.gov, there are “no strict upper or lower age limits.” The generality of age is not a determinate of specific health. A person’s case is evaluated based on the severity of the case.
People hesitant of donating due to diseases that they think could affect the organs might not have to worry. Organdonor.gov states that people with a systemic infection, active cancer, and HIV cannot donate organs. There are just a few exclusions due to disease.
A widespread rumor that adds to the confusion is revival situations. Many believe that if a person becomes an organ donor, the hospital staff will not try as hard to save the donor’s life. This is not true. “When you go to the hospital for treatment, doctors focus on saving your life — not somebody else’s,” says Mayo Clinic.
Many also fear that the will not be completely deceased when the donation takes place. According to Mayo Clinic, more tests are given to organ donors to confirm the passing.
Other concerns include religious reservations. Organ donation is allowable in most major religions such as Catholicism, Islam, Judaism, and Protestant branches. If a potential donor is still unsure of a religion’s stance, he or she should speak to a religious leader.
Donors are not discriminated against by race, age, gender or sexual orientation. When organs are available, the recipients are chosen by need and no other factor. Money and influence has nothing to do with the wait list.
According to organdonor.gov, 100 million people in the U.S. are registered organ donors. Fifty lives can be saved by one organ donor. Still the need is real. An average of 18 people a day die while waiting for a donor. There is an urgent need for people to register.
Signing up is simple. If not already made an official organ donor while receiving or renewing a license, a person can register with the state. People interested in donating can go tohttp://www.organdonor.gov/becomingdonor/ in order to receive more information on the registration process. If not you are not comfortable with becoming an organ donor, monetary donations can also be made.

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