National Donate Life Month—Encouraging Organ Donation Awareness and Designations
April 03, 2017
April has been designated as National Donate Life Month in an effort to encourage Americans to register as organ, eye, and tissue donors and to celebrate those that have saved lives through the gift of donation.
According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, there are more than 119,000 individuals on the national transplant waiting list and another person is added to the list every 10 minutes. Ninety-five percent of U.S. adults support organ donation, but only 48 percent are actually signed up as donors. Pennsylvania hospitals are working to change that through participation in the 2017 Pennsylvania Donate Life Hospital Challenge.
“So many people have the potential to change one life, and maybe more, simply by being. Not because of their wealth, their belongings, their connections–––but just by being, and understanding that their body alone contains a powerful gift. In changing lives through organ donation, they will touch and change many other lives in countless ways,” said Paula Bussard, HAP’s chief strategy officer.
HAP has partnered with the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and the Center for Organ Recovery & Education and Gift of Life Donor Program—the two organ procurement organizations serving Pennsylvania, to support the Pennsylvania Hospital Challenge, and effort to encourage Pennsylvania hospitals to increase organ donation awareness and designations within their hospital and community. The 2017 campaign kicked off last month with more than 110 hospitals joining the education and outreach effort.
In addition, Governor Tom Wolf proclaimed April as national Donate Life Month and encourages Pennsylvanians to consider becoming an organ and tissue donor by placing the organ donor designation on their driver’s license or state identification card, or registering online at and sharing this decision with their family.
For more information about Pennsylvania hospitals’ efforts to support organ donation, contact Mary Marshall, HAP’s director, workforce and professional services.