The Morgan County Coroner’s Office is working to raise the number of organ donors in the area.
April is Organ Donors Awareness Month, and Morgan County Coroner Marcy Patterson is teaming up for a special event tomorrow to help get more residents to choose to be a donor.
“The Coroner’s Office and Morgan County teamed up with the Gift of Hope to try and get some new people added to the organ donation list. We’d like to see a few more people added to the list, specifically our target is 500. All month long we’ve had it where we are giving away t-shirts to anyone who comes into The Source office and signs up. Tomorrow we are having a drive-through event at First Christian Church on South Main Street from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.
All you have to do is drive in and sign the form that says you will be an organ donor and we will give you a t-shirt. It’s going to take about five minutes to go in, sign up and get your shirt.”
Patterson says the goal is to reach the 500 new organ donors by the end of the month. She says currently 64% of Morgan County is registered to be an organ and tissue donor. She says even if you already are signed up, you can still come out to the event tomorrow.
“One of the things we are finding is that people believe they are already organ donors. But that’s okay, come out anyway, stop through, fill out the paperwork. If you are, we don’t lose anything by verifying that you are and you still get a free t-shirt and get to support our effort.”
Those who are unable to attend tomorrow’s drive-through event can do so online by going to www.registerMe.org/MorganCounty.
Patterson says on the website you can also enjoy the story of the local people they have met that have been given the gift of life through Organ and Tissue Donation.
“I would like to remind everybody that this is one opportunity to absolutely change someone’s life forevermore. We recognized earlier in the month seven people in Morgan County who are alive today because they received an organ donation.
So it’s a powerful thing in our community and we want people to be able to be a part of it. SO come out tomorrow and take five minutes and be with us and sign up the paperwork.”
Patterson says right now it takes five to seven years to get a kidney for someone who is on a waiting list. She says a lot of people don’t understand the wait time people on these lists have to go through.
She also says the decision to be an organ donor is not something people should have to make during trying times such as the death of a loved one. Signing up for the registry is a first-person consent, so making the decision to become an organ and tissue donor takes both the choice and the burden off of the family after death.
The drive-through sign-up event is being held tomorrow at the First Christian Church on South Main Street from 10 am to noon. And the first 100 people to sign up during the event will receive the free t-shirt.