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Wait lists for transplants growing: Carpenter

Kevin Clements is one of 16 Islanders currently on a waiting list for an organ transplant.
Kevin Clements is one of 16 Islanders currently on a waiting list for an organ transplant. - Eric McCarthy

CHARLOTTETOWN

The wait lists for organ transplants are “always growing” right across the country says Angela Carpenter manager of Organ and Tissue Donor and Transplant Program for Health P.E.I.

Carpenter said 75 to 80 per cent of the people on transplant lists across the country are awaiting kidney transplants and that number is comparable on P.E.I. where 12 of the 16 people awaiting organ transplants are in need of a kidney.

Carpenter highlighted the province’s “Make it Zero” campaign to encourage every eligible Islander to register to be a donor, thus help to reduce the number of people waiting for a transplant. Read up on the 'Make it Zero' campaign here

There are no organ removal or transplant surgeries performed on P.E.I. Most of the people from P.E.I. who receive a donor organ have their surgery performed in Halifax and most of the organ removal procedures are performed there.

Carpenter said families are consulted but are not pressured to make a decision on organ donation.

“The sooner we start the process the better, but it is not like a doctor is going to come to a family and say, ‘we need a decision now.’ You will have time to think about it and talk about it and ask questions,” she said.

To be considered an organ donor after death, one must die in hospital while on life support, and have an irreversible brain injury.

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