Organ donation worth considering

Published 9:23 am Friday, July 17, 2015

It is truly remarkable how far technology and modern medicine has come. The lifesaving practices that are available to physicians in this country are incredible, and because of them, millions of people worldwide have had a second chance at life.

Among these medical advancements is the possiblity for organ donation. For 50 years doctors have been transplanting eye tissue to improve vision, and in recent decades, researchers have found ways to transplant vital organs necessary to live.

In Michigan alone, more than 3,500 residents are waiting for a kidney, liver, heart, lung, pancreas, intestine or combination of these organs.

The bottom line is that there just aren’t enough donors signed up.

In Berrien County, only 50 percent of registered drivers have signed up for organ donation. People like Lonnie Atherton who have been impacted by organ donation work tirelessly to inform people about the benefits of organ donation, and they should be commended.

Regardless of how you feel about the subject, we encourage you to communicate with your loved ones about your wishes. We understand that this is a difficult discussion to have, but the fact of the matter is, emergencies are never predicted.

And if you don’t feel comfortable donating your own organs, we encourage you to consider donating to efforts like Lonnie’s Golfers for Organ Donor Awareness so that those researchers can continue improving the process to save others’ lives.

As one Optimist member pointed during Lonnie’s presentation to the club Tuesday, when it comes time to make a decision about organ donation, it is usually too late to make the decision.

We encourage everyone to take advantage of resources like the ones Lonnie provides and become informed about organ donation. If you have questions or concerns, contact organizations like Gift of Life Michigan who would be more than happy to assist you.

For more information, contact Gift of Life at 800-482-4881.


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.