Becoming an Organ Donor
Donor organs are needed—there are currently more than 100,000
people on the national
organ transplant waiting list. If you are interested
in donating an organ, contact the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) at
1-888-894-6361 or go online at www.unos.org to get more information and to
locate the nearest transplant center.
You can donate an organ upon your death, or in some cases while you are alive. To learn more, see the topics:
Internet donor-matching services
are set up to help people who need an organ transplant
to contact potential living donors. Some experts believe these services undermine
the current system, which is based on donated organs going to people who are
most in need and those waiting the longest for a donor. Others believe online
donor matching services provide a useful resource for helping people who have
had problems finding a donor within the current system. For more information
about these services, talk to your doctor.
You do not have to be a blood relative (such as a sibling
or parent) of the person who receives your organ. You can be someone who is emotionally related to the person, such as a close friend or spouse, or
you can even be a stranger.