With the holiday season in full swing, we become more aware of the generosity of others. I’m not referring to presents under the tree, but in my world, this means saving lives through organ donation. At AOPO we give thanks every day for the generosity of donors and their families who selflessly give the gift of life, and recognize the organ procurement organizations (OPOs) that help facilitate the delivery of this precious gift from donor to recipient.

What Are OPOs?
OPOs are every day heroes who act as the bridge between organ donors and recipients. They work with donor families, hospitals, and transplant programs to facilitate a successful donation and transplant matching process. OPOs provide:

  • professional education to develop hospital donation policies/procedures and inform healthcare professionals about the donation process;
  • compassionate care and grief support to donor families before, during, and after donation;
  • clinical support to donors to ensure their organs are medically suitable for transplant; and
  • communities with education on the donation process to allow them to make informed decisions about donation.

OPOs give all year round to ensure the organ donation process is carried out successfully from recovery to transplantation.

Joe’s Donation Story
You can learn more about how organ donation changes lives by reading Joe’s story. Joe received a heart transplant and his life was made bright again by the continuous support of OPOs throughout the donation process and beyond. During this season of giving, I hope you will be inspired by Joe’s story and make the decision to give the gift of life by adding your name to the national donor registry at RegisterMe.org.

The best way to make an informed decision is to learn about the process. The AOPO Donation Process page is a great resource to understand the steps involved with donation. In addition, the following infographic helps to explain the important work OPOs do every day.  

As always, I look for your feedback here and hope you will take the opportunity to engage with me. Together we are leading the way forward to save more lives.

Steve Miller, CEO, AOPO