Along with celebrating Valentine's Day, February 14th is also National Donor Day, a day set aside to recognize those who have shared the love through organ and tissue donation.
In 2018, there were more than 36,600 organ transplants performed in the U.S. with 300 in Nebraska alone.There are more than 113,000 people in the U.S. waiting for an organ transplant with more than 400 in Nebraska.
There 229 Nebraskans waiting for a kidney transplant, 142 needing a liver, 58 waiting for a heart transplant, 5 needing kidney/pancreas transplants, 14 in need of a pancreas and six an intestine transplant.
Statistics show that twenty people die every day waiting for an organ transplant. That equals about 8,000 people a year and another person is added to the transplant list every 10 minutes.
One organ donor can save up to eight lives and one tissue donor can save or improve the quality of life for 100 people.
Individuals who wish to donate while they are still living can provide a kidney or a portion of their liver to those in need.In 2018, 6,800 people in the U.S. were living donors.
In Nebraska, anyone over the age of 16 can register as an organ, tissue and eye donor regardless of their age, health or lifestyle. Registering as a donor ensures your wishes to donate are carried out. Family consent is not necessary if an individual is registered.
A majority of individuals register as an organ donor when they obtain their driver's license but anyone can register or update their registry online at LiveOnNebraska.org, or click here.
To be screened for a living donation in Nebraska, contact Nebraska Medicine at 1-800-401-4444, 402-559-5000 or by clicking here.