Thanksgiving does more than bring families together, it brings families together from other cultures and parts of society.
Inica Nichols’ life was torn when her son, 14-year-old Da’Quan, was killed in a car crash. A life changing blessing came when Nichols’s donated Da’Quan’s organs to other children so they could have a chance to live.
Four children – two boys and two girls – were the recipient of organs donated by Da’Quan. This week, Nichols had a Thanksgiving lunch with them and their families. The children were formerly patients of the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, where doctors performed the transplants.
Number of children on the transplant list
A new patient is added to the national waiting list for an organ donor every 12 minutes, but donors are in short supply. According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Human Services, nearly 2,000 children under the age of 18 are on the national transplant waiting list.
The average wait time for an organ can vary. Liver transplants can take up to 11 months; heart and lung transplants can take four months; and pancreas transplants can take two years. Kidney transplants can take up five years, leading some to ensure dialysis. Fortunately for some children waiting to receive a transplant, the wait time can be less.
Sabrina Smith was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at the age at the age of eight. Smith grew up being a diabetic. Following years of an uncontrolled diet, Smith was told that her kidney was failing and that she needed a transplant. Smith was even told that there was no guarantee she would receive a matching organ. The average wait time for a kidney is five years. A match for Smith was located within four months. At the age of 24, Smith received both a kidney and a liver.
Life on the transplant list
More people are on the organ donor list than available matches. The average wait time for other organs such a pancreas, liver, heart, and lung can vary from four months to two years. Contributing factors that can delay the transplant are due to blood type and medical factors involved in organ donation. Other factors considered are based on the organ need are issues related to waiting time, donor/recipient immune system compatibility, the distance of the donor hospital, medical need, and the health condition of the prior living donor. A families’ income, or celebrity status definitely shouldn’t influence the wait time.
Organ Donation Saves Lives
Organ donor recipients share stories of having a second chance at life. A perfect organ match is like a gift from heaven. Family members are often suitable donors. Some recipients receive organs from people they don’t even know. But they’re like angels. About twenty-two people die each day waiting for an organ. Registering to be an organ donor is easy and. Here’s how you can become one today.