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Hands holding a diagram of a kidney

April is Donate Life Month

Celebrating and honoring the gift of life

Currently, more than 9,000 people in New York State are waiting for a life-saving transplant. You can make a difference!

The national transplant waiting list has over 100,000 patients – more than 9,000 of which are in New York state alone. By registering to join the New York State Donate Life Registry, you could help save lives. 

Why Donate? 

It can be difficult to find a donor match for someone in need with the same blood and tissue type. This is why a large and diverse donor pool is beneficial. Just one donor can help save up to eight people, and individuals of any age and medical history are eligible to register as potential donors. 

There are two ways in which a person can donate life: 

  • Living Donor: A living donor transplant is when a healthy person donates one of their two kidneys. In some cases, they may donate one of their lungs, a part of a liver or lung, or their pancreas. A person can live a full, healthy life with just one healthy kidney. 
  • Deceased Donor: The organs and tissues of a deceased patient may be preserved and donated to patients in need. This includes kidneys, pancreas, tissue, heart, cornea and more. The Upstate Transplant Program works with organ procurement organizations to accept organs from deceased donors.  

How To Donate an Organ or Tissue 

Before registering as a donor, you should discuss your decision with your family. Once you’ve decided this decision is right for you, there are two ways in which you can register, either through the Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network or at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). At the DMV you can either fill out a donor card or sign the back of your driver's license. Anyone over the age of 16 in NY is eligible to register.