Bermuda Organ Donor Association and Bermuda Hospitals Board celebrate Donate Life Week

Focusing Bermuda’s attention on organ donation and having everyone consider becoming a donor is the aim of the Bermuda Organ Donor Association and Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) in Organ Donation Awareness Week. This year the campaign will run from Monday 25 April to Friday 29 April.

“Have the Conversation” is the theme this year and it refers to the need for those who want to have their organs donated, to discuss their desire with their loved ones. Unlike the US where you can simply register to have your organs donated in the event you die, in Bermuda it is the next of kin who decide. That’s why the Bermuda Organ Donation Association is stressing the importance of letting your friends and family know what you want. In many cases next of kin do try to honour the wishes of the deceased.

Representatives from the New England Donor Bank, BHB’s partner for organ donations, will be on island during the week giving lectures and training to health workers. They will also be on hand to meet the public at health screenings and a panel discussion. On Tuesday afternoon they will raise the Donate Life flag, a symbol of the organization, at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.

The public are invited to attend any or all of the three public awareness events that will take place during the week. Free health screenings will be offered on Monday 25 April from 10am- 1pm at the Washington Mall lower level next to the food court and on Tuesday 26 April from 10- noon at the Transport Control Department on Parson’s Road.

There will also be a free panel discussion on the theme “Have the Conversation”. Representatives from the New England Donor Bank and the Bermuda Organ Donor Association will share the basic information on what organ donation entails and what you need to do if you want to donate. The informative session will take place on Tuesday 26 April from 6pm -8pm at the Mariner’s Club in Hamilton.

In the US the number of people in need of transplants outpaces the number of donor organs. According to New England Donor Bank in the US about 22 people die each day because the organs they need are not donated in time. Talking to your family about your decision to become a donor is the most effective way to ensure you can save lives through donation and serves as sign of hope to those like who continue to wait.

To register as a donor or for more information about how to get involved, please visit www.DonateLifeNewEngland.org.

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