As you read this, some 1600 Australians are waiting for a transplant that will improve, possibly even save their lives. Sadly, some of them will die waiting. The demand for organs always exceeds supply, even though more Australians, and Queenslanders in particular, are now registered organ donors.
This week is Donate Life Week – and there are activities all over far north Queensland to promote awareness of the need for more organ and tissue donors, and to encourage donor registration. You don’t need to be a perfect physical specimen, but there are a small number of medical conditions that could prevent you donating your organs after death.
All over Australia, there are people needing hearts, livers, kidneys, lungs or a pancreas. While they wait, they may need dialysis, oxygen tanks or long stays in hospital. And they live with the distress of knowing that the clock is ticking. Here in FNQ, there’s a particular focus on encouraging more indigenous Australians to become organ and tissue donors. That’s because the chances of a successful transplant for an indigenous person are much better if the organ comes from an indigenous donor.
Listen to Sonja Johnson and Loren Ginders talk about Donate Life week events in far north Queensland, and the reasons for encouraging indigenous Australians to become organ donors.
Sonja Johnson is the CEO of Regional Development Australia FNQ & Torres Strait. Loren Ginders is the clinical nurse consultant for organ and tissue donation with Donate Life Queensland. Loren is based in the intensive care unit at Cairns Base Hospital, where she often works with the families of organ donors.
Details of Donate Life week events in far north Queensland at http://www.rdafnqts.org.au/index.php/rda-initiatives/donatelife-week
And details on organ & tissue donation and becoming a donor at http://www.donatelife.gov.au/