Bermudians Urged To Become Organ Donors

April 26, 2014

The Bermuda Hospitals Board [BHB] and the Bermuda Organ and Tissue Donor Association [BOTDA] are marking next week’s Organ Donation Campaign by urging more Bermudians to become organ donors.

The main focus of the annual promotion is educating the community about this vital and life-saving process. Members of the public are invited to stop by the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital lobby to learn more about becoming organ donors. A poster display and information table will be available throughout the week and healthcare professionals will be available to discuss organ donation on Monday 28 April from 10:00am to 1:00pm in the lobby.

Muriel Williams, BHB Registered Nurse and President of BOTDA says, “The best and easiest way to become a donor is to fill out a donor card, available at TCD, doctor’s offices and at post offices. Your choice to be a donor may also be indicated on your driver’s license. Carrying a signed donor card is a good way to confirm your consent.

“It is equally important to discuss this decision with family members so your interest in becoming a donor is been clearly made known. Your surviving next of kin has the authority to make a final decision regarding organ donation and this even supersedes what is indicated on your driver’s license. To avoid family conflicts during a stressful and challenging time, it is important your wishes have been communicated with your loved ones in advance.”

While advances in medical science have made transplant surgery a treatment option for some serious diseases, there remains a global shortage of organs. Many people both in Bermuda and around the world wait months and years for transplantation.

Ms Williams adds, “Organ donation saves lives – and there is no greater gift you can give another human being. Every day, people die waiting for organ transplants and every 11 minutes another person’s name is added to the list of thousands awaiting a lifesaving organ. Currently, there are over 110,000 patients waiting for a transplant in the United States, including people in Bermuda.”

Judy Richardson, BHB Chief of Nursing, Quality and Risk, says, “We currently treat 160 people at our dialysis unit every week- 25 of these patients are on the waiting list for a donated kidney. Over the past ten years, 45 Bermudians received kidney transplants. Organ donors provide patients with life-saving alternatives to illness and greatly improve their quality of life.

“We have an opportunity this week to increase the number of people in our community who are organ donors, which will also give new hope to many Bermudians who are currently on transplant waiting lists. In addition to filling out a donor card, we urge people choosing to become donors to share their decision with family members.”

Bermuda is affiliated with the New England Donor Bank and follows best practice protocols, which includes evaluating potential donors, discussing donation with family members, coordinating the surgical removal of donated organs and arranging organ distribution according to national policies. Although most people support donation, many have not taken the important step of signing up to be a donor and making sure their relatives understand their wishes.

André Outerbridge and Charmaigne Laws, who lost their only child, daughter Chardré Yawana, in 2002 following a road traffic collision, made the decision to donate her organs. “We choose to honour the memory of our beloved daughter by giving the gift of life to others,” Charmaigne says. “It brings us comfort knowing that from our personal tragedy, another family’s child may have been saved. We encourage Bermudians to become organ donors and help save the lives of those waiting transplantation.”

Ms. Williams notes, “We want to reassure the community that if you are sick or injured, our number one priority is to save your life. Organ and tissue donation will be pursued only after all efforts to save your life have failed, and after your family has been consulted. Members of the public may contact the hospital at 239-1460 for more information about becoming an organ donor. In addition, Members of BOTDA are available for presentations at companies and business wishing to know more about organ donation.”

Activities scheduled for the week

28 April to 2 May
King Edward VII Memorial Hospital [KEMH]
Lobby display and information table

28 April, Monday
KEMH
10:00am to 1:00pm
Healthcare professionals will register donors and answer questions

29 April, Tuesday
TCD
11:00am to 1:00pm
Free public screenings for blood pressure and blood sugar; registering organ donors

30 April, Wednesday
Butterfield Bank, Reid St.
11:00am to 1:00pm
Free public screenings for blood pressure and blood sugar; registering organ donors

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  1. NON says:

    How about Bermudians start donating blood too? The expats can’t keep going it alone. And YES, they are the major donors. You’re welcome.

    • HA! says:

      Many Bermudians, including myself, donate on a regular basis. It would be nice if everyone gave more.

  2. Reality says:

    Hope they ain’t lookin for livers or lungs!

  3. think before you act says:

    I notice that a huge amount of young adults and teenagers have these godly odd tattoos on parts of their body atleast by 16. Maybe have a requirement for first time tattoos, these teeneagers should donate blood. Make that a mandatory restrictions here on this country. Too bad I can’t contribute. I had a mandatory blood tranfustion when I was pretty young which takes me out of the running to donate and give back. Wish I could. I’m sure B+ is pretty low in stock at KEmH.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Why not just make it a requirement for everyone? Why single out one group?
      And why tattoos?

  4. What Up says:

    Zane Desilva donated when he was health minister i wonder if he has been back since. I bet not!!!

  5. Yes …I agree…also tat’s denote mindset….in other words…and this is just my opinion …however…a tatoo is an adornment…a statement…which…if you think about it is indicative of a n innefectual stance in life…a statement of lowly inneffectual stature
    If you are effectual …stong willed and mind…self assured in your place in life …..there certainly is no need to display you insecurity…by perminant emblazened bravado…

    • Mike Hind says:

      Gibberish.

      Just because you don’t want or like tattoos doesn’t mean that someone who does is in ANY way less than you.

      I have tattoos because I like them or wanted to commemorate an important milestone in my life, not because I am insecure.

      If you want an indicator of a “lowly ineffectual stature”, you might say that trying to drag others down for having a different way of thinking than you might be one…

  6. The most important thing to know about tatoos is tjat it over works your kidneys and liver….it reduces the bodies ability to cast out toxins through sweat…….then at some point you end up having to go to dialisis……an indignity….a pain in the butt….but absolutely necessary to life….why do that to yourself?

  7. Mike…tats reduce the bodies ability to sweat…sweat is a way the body removes or casts out toxins……s’why you smell like alcohol three days on……if you aren’t sweating properly the bodies other ways are overworked deminishing their function and leaving toxins in your blood….see dialisis….. eavily tatooed people often have problems with their kidneys and liver drastically reducing their longevity…yakuza….and russion gangsters have this issue……

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m surprised that someone who is so adverse to tattoos thinks to know all about tattoos. I personally love tattoos, I love the art form and I love commemorating milestones, like Mike. If you visit a tattoo shop that has been health inspected there is a very low chance that you will eventually have to go to a hospital for dialysis due to liver and Kidney infections. You are correct that yakuza do have this problem but it is mostly because they use an older method (most painful method) of “Tap” tattooing and also the inks, (red in particular) contain cinnabar which is toxic, but this is mostly available in China, but is not used in other parts of the world. Also the Yakuza is a tiny percentage of the global tattoo community…the majority of which have no health issues whatsoever. As far as Russian gangsters, some may have received their tattoos in prison so, not the most hygienic of places to get a tattoo, and more than likely if it is a prison setting, tattoo machines would be created out of items they made themselves.

      I have 8 tattoos and I still sweat like everyone else and…I’m an organ donor.

  8. Pircings bother are an adornment that are just plane regressive…might as well put a chicken bone in your nose and go boogah boogah!

  9. Now…I can’t continue this dialog with you hind….you are in a restricted fishing area….you a prhibited and off limits on fishing gps….