What Is the Process of Organ Donation?

When considering registering as an organ donor, most individuals want to understand what opting in entails. One thing that you should know is that your status as an organ donor will not affect your standard of care should you find yourself in a life-threatening situation — the doctors and nurses will fight to save your life without considering whether or not you are a donor. It’s best to understand the process of organ donation and what you can expect. Below are specifics on the organ donation process.

Registering as a Donor

Even after death, a person’s organs are never donated without consent, which requires registering as an organ donor. You can register with your state, though most register when they apply for or update their driver’s license.

Living vs. Non-Living Donors

If a donor is living, they are donating a specific organ such as a kidney or another organ that is not essential to life or death. However, when a person is non-living and registered as an organ donor, they have multiple organs that can be donated, possibly saving 8 lives in the process.

Notification and Authorization

After brain death is diagnosed, the hospital notifies the Organ Procurement Organization, which determines if the deceased patient is an eligible candidate for organ donation. If this is the case, an OPO representative checks to see if the deceased is registered as a donor. If the deceased never registered, the representative can ask the deceased’s legal next of kin for authorization.

Matching, Recovering, and Transplanting

If the OPO receives the go-ahead for donation, the deceased’s organs are matched to a database of individuals in need of organ transplants. After a match is found, time is of the essence. A transplant team quickly and carefully removes organs and tissue for transplant and delivers them to a transport team who deliver them for transplant.

As you can see, registering as an organ donor is a way that you can save lives at no risk to yourself. Sign up today, and with this simple act, you personally can save up to 8 lives!

Sign the pledge today.