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Organ donation: the gift of life
by TeenHelp July 5th 2019, 03:24 PM

Organ donation: the gift of life
By Brittany (.Brittany.)

In 2016, approximately 260 people died waiting for organ transplants in Canada and that number keeps increasing each year. There were 474 liver transplants completed, but at the end of the year there were still 329 people waiting and 78 had already died waiting [source]. Unfortunately, some deaths occur suddenly or early, not giving the person time to discuss with their families what their wishes are when it comes to donating their organs. When one person donates their organs, up to 8 lives can be saved or extended; this includes the heart, both lungs, liver, pancreas, both kidneys, and intestines [source].

However, organ donation is going to change in 2020 or 2021 in Nova Scotia, Canada. In April 2019, Nova Scotia announced that they will become the first in North America to have presumed consent for organ donation. This means that when someone passes away they will donate their organs automatically, unless they have otherwise stated. However, a person under the age of 19 or without decision-making capacity would be exempt and would only be considered if a parent, guardian, or the substitute decision-maker opts them in.

There have been a lot of mixed feelings from the Nova Scotia residents in regards to this news. Most residents have been talking about religious and personal beliefs when it comes to donating. However, they have many opportunities to opt out if they would like. This will be done when they receive their new health card or when they renew it.

On the other end of the spectrum, there are many people across the country who are happy to see this change. There will be a lot more lives saved, giving people more time to live. Other provinces are hoping that they will also be able to join the new legislation. Currently all Canadians have the opportunity to opt in for organ donation when they renew either their health cards or their drivers license or by going online.

Although the loss of a loved one is very difficult, the ability to enhance potentially 8 other lives is an opportunity that can make a world of difference in many more people and their loved ones. Research organ donation in your area if you are interested in learning more.

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donation, gift, life, organ

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