Here are some hard truths about organ donation:
More than 120,000 people are waiting to receive donated organs right now.
Every 10 minutes, someone new is added to the waiting list.
It's estimated that 22 patients die every day because they didn't receive an organ. That's more than 8,000 a year.
Of all the deaths in the United States, only 2% result in organ donation
Although most Americans support organ donation, there's still an incredible shortage. The vast majority of Americans - 95%! - are in favor of organ donation but only 52% are registered. There's strong support from the medical and healthcare community as well as from most organized religions, and yet not enough people join the registry.
Organ and tissue transplants are almost always successful. The survival success rate for is 95% kidney recipients, 85% for heart and liver, and 75% for lung. This makes the shortage of these organs all the more tragic.
Your organs have tremendous value. One person can donate up to 8 lifesaving organs! And organ, eye, and tissue donation can enhance up to 50 other lives.
It's completely free. Neither you nor your family have to pay for you to become a lifesaver.
Anyone can donate. Anyone, regardless of age, ethnicity, or medical history can sign up for the registry (Donors under 18 will need parental consent at the time of donation).
The good news is that more than 30,000 transplants were performed in 2015. But the waiting list never stops growing. Here's a list of different organizations that you can easily sign up with in order to become an organ donater!
Organ Donor: http://www.organdonor.gov/register.html
Register Me: https://registerme.org/
Donate Life California: http://donatelifecalifornia.org/
Donate Life Australia: http://www.donatelife.gov.au/decide
So what is an organ donation network and how does it work?
There are tons of non-for-profit organ donation networks all over the US and Canada. As a member of one of these organizations, you get first access to other member's organs. The organization is also responsible for donating your organs when you die, which you promise to do when you sign up. Membership is always free and you might have access to organs that might not otherwise be available to you. It's a great support system that takes away any uncertainty about the organ donation process after you pass away.
Here are some available in different states around the US. You can always find a local network with an easy google search as well: