her mother Nancy and the Heigl family work
tirelessly to raise awareness
of organ, eye and tissue donation. This is a subject very close
to their hearts, as Katherine's brother Jason was a donor after
he was tragically killed in a car accident in 1986.
than 90,000 men, women and children currently await
12 minutes another name is added to the national transplant
average of 17 people die each day from the lack of available
organs for transplant.
2004, there were 7,150 deceased organ donors and 6,990 living
organ donors resulting in 27,028 organ transplants.
Nearly 47,000 cornea transplants were performed in 2004.
Approximately 1,000,000 tissue transplants are
latest donation and transplantation data, information and
statistics visit the
Donate Life America is a not-for-profit alliance of
national organizations and local coalitions across the United
States dedicated to inspiring all people to donate life through organ and tissue donation.
Donate Life’s efforts focus on the
life-saving aspects of donation and encourage people to take
action now to ensure their donation wishes are carried out
Katherine and Nancy recipients of the
Dr. James S. Wolf Courage Award
out how you can help to promote donation visit the
"It's hard for people to be
thinking about organ donation for the first time in the midst of
crisis," said Katherine in an interview for
Spotlight Health in May 2002. "But organ donation is the
most honorable way to preserve the memory of someone you love. I
learned through difficult experience that this is the right and
humanitarian thing to do. The need is always out there. Make
sure the people around you know your feelings on organ donation,
so your loved ones can fulfill those wishes without any doubt."
There are a number of myths surrounding organ and tissue
donation, here are the facts:
Myths & Facts
Myth: If emergency
room doctors know you’re an organ donor, they won’t work as hard
to save you.
Fact: If you are sick or injured and admitted to the
hospital, the number one priority is to save your life. Organ
donation can only be considered if you die and after your family
has been consulted.
Myth: When you’re
waiting for a transplant, your financial status or celebrity
status is as important as your medical status.
Fact: When you are on the transplant waiting list for a
donor organ, what really counts is the severity of your illness,
time spent waiting, blood type and other important medical
Myth: Having "organ
donor" noted on your driver's license or carrying a donor card
is all you have to do to become a donor.
Fact: While a signed donor card and a driver's license
with an "organ donor" designation are legal documents, organ and
tissue donation is always discussed with family members prior to
the donation. To ensure that your family understands your
wishes, it is important that you share your decision to donate
Myth: I am 60 years
old. I am too old to be a donor.
Fact: People of all ages and medical histories should
consider themselves potential donors. Your medical condition at
the time of death will determine what organs and tissue can be
Myth: My family will
be charged for donating my organs.
Fact: There is no cost to the donor's family or estate
for organ and tissue donation. Funeral costs remain the
responsibility of the family.
to increase donation. Your support gives hope for a second
chance at LIFE.