Steve Jobs' recent return to the public eye after a liver transplant highlights the amazing benefits that can come from organ donation. In his own words, "I now have the liver of a mid-20s person who died in a car crash and was generous enough to donate their organs. I wouldn't be here without such generosity,"
But organ donation is not a simple issue, and many have to wait for months or years for a suitable organ. A recent article in the Ohio Dayton Daily News reports that 54% percent of those eligible people are registered to donate organs (which means that close to half of those that could register to donate, don't). That puts Ohio ahead of most of the nation, though.
Nationally, according to the non-profit group Donate Life, only 38% of drivers have registered to be organ donors, more than 100,000 people are awaiting a donated organ, and 18 people die each day waiting for available organs.
The article listed the following reasons why people choose not to register:
- Concerns about bodily integrity.
- Worries that signing a donor card may 'jinx' them.
- Mistrust of doctors and fear that they won't get proper care if they are registered organ donors.
For more information on being an organ donor, see Nolo's article The Organ Donor: A Guide.