Feb 24
Donate Life Week 2014: Have The Chat That Saves Lives

Western NSW Local Health District (LHD) issupporting DonateLife Week, Australia’s national awareness week to promote organ and tissue donation.

From Sunday 23 February to Sunday 2 March 2014, Australians are being urged to discover the facts about organ and tissue donation and to register their donation decision on the Australian Organ Donor Register.

According to Western NSW LHD Donation Specialist Sonia Braithwaite, it’s even moreimportant that people ‘have the chat’ with loved ones to make sure their donation decision is known.

“In the same way that we discuss what we want to have happen in the event of our death, we also need to talk about whether we would like to become an organ and tissue donor. It’s a conversation we can have today, that helps prepare our loved ones should they be offered the opportunity to proceed with organ and tissue donation.

“With one organ and tissue donor able to transform the lives of 10 or more people, it’s a conversation that could one day save lives,” Ms Braithwaite said.

In Australia, the family will always be asked to confirm the donation decision of the deceased before donation for transplantation can proceed. Families that have discussed and know each other’s donation decisions are much more likely to support organ and tissue donation proceeding.

“Even if you have previously made a decision about organ and tissue donation, DonateLife Week is a great opportunity to remind your family about your donation decision, and to ask and know their decision. Any day this week is a good day to have the chat with your family and close friends,” Ms Braithwaite said.

Less than one per cent of all hospital deaths occur in the specific circumstances where a person can be considered for organ donation, although many more have the potential to become tissue donors. To optimise every opportunity for potential donation, have the chat that saves lives this DonateLife Week.

For more information visit www.donatelife.gov.au