April is Organ Donation Awareness Month. The process to sign up in Missouri has changed in recent years. Now, a closer look at the potential impact of making the decision to donate in our Freeman Medical Focus.
"We have many people who are dying from the lack of organs that are available. And there are so many people that die that would like to provide a gift and sometimes make sense out of something that is so senseless when death occurs." Freeman Family Care Specialist Roxanna Estes says that a former requirement meant that whether you signed off on the program, you loved ones still had to make the final decision. But that process has changed. "In 2008 what that did is - it says intent, I'm giving my signature right here and now and telling you that I'm giving permission. And it basically takes it out of the hands of the family so that they don't have to make that decision. You've already made that decision, it's just up to loved ones to support that decision."
Healthcare workers say some potential donors automatically rule themselves out, assuming health issues would disqualify them. But they say that's not necessarily the case. "We encourage everyone to sign up to be an organ donor. If that's something you think you'd like to give the gift of life, sign that intent that you'd like to be an organ donor."
You can find out more about organ donation by clicking here.