Are You an Organ Donor? This Video May Change Your Mind

Every day, about 79 people in the United States receive organ transplants and another 18 die for lack of an available organ. Did you know that one organ donor can save up to eight lives?

Right now, more than 115,000 men, women, and children are on the waiting list for an organ transplant (White House, 2013). Organ donation saves lives! Organ recipient Alonzo Mourning calls it, “a gift beyond compare.”

As of May 2009, the percentage of recipients who were still living five years after their transplant:

  • kidney: 69.3%
  • heart: 74.9%
  • liver: 73.8%
  • lung: 54.4%
  • (, 2013)

Are you eligible to be an organ donor after you pass away?
Most likely, yes. Everyone, from newborn babies to senior citizens have successfully donated organs. Condition of organs is more important than age. The transplant team will evaluate organs for suitability. Parent or guardian consent is required for children under age 18. Absolute exclusions include:

  • HIV infection
  • active cancer
  • systemic infection

What organs and tissues can be donated?

  • heart
  • kidneys
  • pancreas
  • lungs
  • liver
  • intestines
  • cornea
  • skin
  • heart valves
  • bone
  • blood vessels
  • connective tissue
  • bone marrow
  • stem cells
  • umbilical cord blood
  • peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC)

Will my family have expenses related to my organ donation?
No! Expenses for organ donations are the responsibility of the recipient. Your family’s costs are limited to your medical care prior to death, and funeral expenses.

April is National Donate Life Month. More than 100 million people in the U.S. are signed up to be a donor — won’t you join us?

For more information, visit: to locate your state registry.

Related Reading
New Heart for Man with Heart of Gold
Once-Blind Photographers Capture Their Gratitude
Are You Eligible to Donate Blood?
Double-Lung Transplant Describes Her First Breath

Photo: YouTube Video: Alonzo Mourning on Organ Donation, via


Ryan Yehling
Ryan Yehling4 years ago

Im a proud organ donor!

Sue Matheson
Sue Matheson4 years ago


John B.
John B4 years ago

Thanks Ann for the very informative article and video.

Doneril Anonymous

i want to donate everything i can someday

Megan Martin
Megan Martin4 years ago

I've been an organ donor since I got my driver's license

Megan Martin
Megan Martin4 years ago

Been an organ donor since I got my driver's license!

Kay Redmon
Kay Redmon4 years ago

If the end of your life can help another have a life then you must be an organ donor. The title on this page was rather confusing, I was expecting to read that there were risks involved or some negative thoughts that may have turned people away from donating their organs. I have been an organ donor since it was first introduced, Once you have passed on, you no longer need organs & if it can help up to 8 people live, then what better "gift" can be given to the thousands of people who are on the donor waiting list. The gift of life is the most precious gift of all. It's something that everyone should give some serious thought to & also discuss it with their family, as there can still be some confusion even though you are on the donor registry list....

Frances Darcy
Frances Darcy4 years ago

Yes, title badly worded. I am a donor

Patrycja R.

The article's title is wrong! I thought it is a negative article. The title should be more positive.

Sheila Stevens
Sheila S4 years ago

ARTICLE TITLE IS MISLEADING! Based on the caption, I was expecting an negative article. Title should be something much more positive. With such a shortage of donors, why scare people off before they've even read the article?