Know the statistics and the life-saving importance of organ donation

More than 100,000 people are waiting to receive an organ transplant, and a new person is added to the list every 10 minutes. For these people, receiving a new organ can be a life-changing event. Unfortunately, there are fewer donor organs available than there are people waiting.

During National Donate Life Month, Children's Health is raising awareness about the life-saving importance of organ donation. See the facts and visit DonateLife.net to register to be a donor. 

Why is organ donation important?

Each year, about 1,900 children across the country wait for an organ transplant. The wait can last weeks, months or even years. Many of these children live and wait in a hospital or visit a hospital several times a week to receive treatment while they wait for a transplant. A lot of kids on the transplant waitlist may not be able to attend school, play or participate in the same activities healthy children do.

The act of organ donation saves lives. In fact, one organ donor can save up to eight lives and improve many other lives by donating eye and bone tissue.

Why would a child need an organ transplant?

Children who are on an organ waitlist typically have end-stage organ disease that significantly impacts their quality of life and may be near the end of their life. Receiving an organ can become a life-changing event that can add years or decades to their life. 

What organs can be donated?

Organs and tissue that can be donated for transplantation include:

  • Cornea (eye)
  • Heart
  • Intestines
  • Kidney
  • Liver
  • Lung
  • Pancreas
  • Tissue (such as skin, tendons and bones)

Most organ donation happens after the donor has died. But living organ donation is growing and an important part of organ donation.

See more FAQs about organ donation.

How can I become an organ donor?

Almost everyone qualifies to become an organ donor. Very rarely, a medical condition may prevent you from donating your organs upon your death or keep you from becoming a living donor. If you would like to register as an organ donor, visit DonateLife.net.

Learn more

Children's Health offers one of the longest-running, most experienced pediatric multi-organ transplant programs in the nation. Learn more about organ donation.