Australians can expect to register as organ donors in less than ten minutes, by May 2016.
Eight years ago, when the Australian government implemented a programme to increase organ donation and transplantation, seven per cent of Australians wereregistered organ donors, accounting for 1.8 million people. An additional 4.3 million have signaled intent to become a donor but have yet to complete the paperwork required under the current system.
“Just 1.8 million (out) of 24 million Australians are registered organ donors,” said Minister Fiona Nash, the Minister responsible for organ donation.
Most Australians would accept a donated organ in times of need, however, a vast majority of Australians are not registered as organ donors yet. This reflects the need to improve Australia’s organ donation and transplantation registration to save more lives by increasing the number of registered organ donors.
As of May this year, the process to become an organ donor will be a one-step, online process which can be completed in less than 10 minutes, no paperwork necessary.
In addition, awareness campaigns will be organised by the coalition government. There will also be efforts to publicise and distribute registration links on social media.
However, the government efforts alone are insufficient to increase the number of donors. Therefore, Minister Nash urges the Australians to step forward and register as organ donors.
“If this change results in the 4.3 million people who have previously signalled an intention to become an organ donor completing registration, we could quickly triple the donor pool and save more lives. However I hope far more people than that will register, and importantly, tell their families about their decision,” Minister Nash mentions.
Currently, there are 1600 Australians on the waiting list for a specific organ and tragically, 50 Australians die each year waiting for an organ.
Therefore, with this new system implemented, it simplifies the process of becoming an organ donor. Everything becomes hassle free and fast. People no longer have to go through the long wait and complicated paperwork to become an organ donor and are thus more propelled to become one.
“Organ donors are real heroes who save lives. Donor families give an amazing gift. Let’s admire our organ donor heroes with the same passion we admire our stars in sport or music or whatever our particular interest is.”
Taking a look at US online organ donation system which was available in 2002, it was setup with the aim to provide up-to-the-minute data on the number of people waiting for organ transplants in the United States.
This, in relation to Australia’s newly implemented system, both will similarly increase the ease of accessibility to information regarding organ donation and subsequently compel more people to become donors as they now feel more informed about it .
Ultimately, Australia’s progress towards to increase organ donation for Australians is notable and will definitely lead to better a better quality of life for them!