Who can be an organ donor?

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:47 pm
Anyone can indicate his or her wish to be an organ or tissue donor regardless of age or medical history. Recent medical advances in organ and tissue transplantation have made it possible to consider more patients as potential donors. And every person is evaluated at the time of death to determine if their organs or tissue may be suitable for transplantation. You can indicate your desire to donate by signing a donor card. For convenience, there is a donor card printed on the back of most driver's licenses. Approval of organ or tissue donation can be indicated by signing over the plastic cover of the license with a ballpoint pen. If the potential donor is under 18 years of age, a donor card must be signed with the consent of the parent or guardian. Should the donor change his or her mind at any time, a line can be drawn through the signature on the back of the driver's license or the card can be destroyed. However, it is important to note that at the time of death your next of kin will have to sign a consent form. It is therefore helpful to notify your family about your decision so that your wishes will be honored at your death. Only those organs or tissue for which permission has been obtained will be removed for transplantation. For more information, contact your local organ donation center.

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