Make your wish count and discuss organ donation

Couple

Tasmanians were urged at the launch of DonateLife Week 2013 in Hobart to make their wish count by discussing organ and tissue donation with family and friends.

In Australia, the family of every potential donor is always asked to confirm the donation wishes of their loved one before organ and or tissue donation can proceed.

This year's DonateLife Week asks all Australians to discover, decide and discuss organ and tissue donation so their family can make their wish count, should the situation arise.

Organ and tissue donation transforms lives - one donor can make a huge difference to the lives of up to 10 people and significantly improve the lives of many more.

Less than one per cent of people will pass away in a circumstance where organ donation is even possible - although many more people can become tissue donors.

Families who have discussed and know the donation wishes of their loved ones in advance are much more likely to say yes to donation.

Close to 60 per cent of families agree to donation proceeding when they are already clear about the wishes of their loved one and they are asked to confirm that decision.

The reasons people decline are complex and personal, but are often the result of not knowing the donation wishes of their loved one, uncertainty if their religion or culture supports donation or the inability to make a decision while dealing with the sudden shock and acute grief at the passing of their loved one.

DonateLife Week challenges Tasmanians to discover the facts about donation and share their donation wishes with their family.

Just as importantly Tasmanians need to register their donation wishes with the Australian Organ Donor Register at Medicare.

Many Australians still believe their intention to donate can be done through their driver's licence, which is not the case.

Events will be held across the state as part of DonateLife Week in Tasmania.

For more information on organ and tissue donation visit www.donatelife.gov.au or contact DonateLife Tasmania on 6270 2209 or at donatelife.tasmania@dhhs.tas.gov.au

24 February 2013