SDS, the nonprofit organ/tissue recovery agency serving nearly four million people in inland Northern California and northern Nevada, set yet another milestone in 2011. For the first time in its 26-year history, the organization saved 243 lives through organ transplants. This represents a 65 percent increase in organs transplanted over the previous year (158).
SDS, a division of DCI Donor Services, also had a record number of tissue donors in 2011, with 698, a 17 percent increase over 2010 (592). Eye donations also increased to a record 352, a 40 percent rise.
The dramatic success can be credited to a number of factors, according to the Executive Director of Sierra Donor Services Monica Johnson-Tomanka.
“Sierra Donor Services continues to work towards our vision of increased public acceptance of organ and tissue donation and by developing ever stronger partnerships with hospitals and the medical community,” she said.
Sierra Donor Services also has taken a lead role in educating the public and is currently signing up more donors on the Donate Life California Registry than any other area in the state, with a donor designation rate (rate of drivers checking “Yes” to donation at DMV) of 30 percent versus 26.2 percent statewide. Since its inception in April 2005, nearly nine million Californians have signed up to be organ donors.
For more information, visit www.sierradonor.org or www.nvdonor.org, or sign up through the DMV when you apply for or renew your driver’s license.