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Making the decision to become an organ and tissue donor

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People who need an organ transplant are usually very ill or dying because an organ is failing. People who need a tissue transplant can also be of any age. In some cases, tissue can save lives. More often, it greatly improves the recipient's life.

One organ and tissue donor can transform the lives of 10 or more people.  The determining factors are where and how a person dies, and the conditions of their organs and tissues. While your age and medical history will be considered, you shouldn't assume you're too young, too old or not healthy enough to become a donor.

The Australian Organ Donor Register

The Australian Organ Donor Register (the Donor Register) is the only national register for people to record their decision about becoming an organ and tissue donor for transplantation after death.

The Donor Register is administered by the Department of Human Services.

The Donor Register ensures a person's donation decision can be verified 24 hours a day, seven days a week by authorised personnel anywhere in Australia. In the event of a person's death, information about their donation decision, accessed from the Donor Register by authorised personnel can be provided to the family of the deceased.

Recording your decision on the Donor Register is voluntary and you have complete choice over which organs and tissues you wish to donate. If you don't want to become an organ and tissue donor, you can register your decision not to donate on the Donor Register.

The Donor Register is not for registering decisions about donating organs and tissue for scientific research purposes or for the manufacture of biological medical products. For information regarding these processes, contact your local state health department.

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DISCOVER

the facts about organ and
tissue donation

  • Frequently asked questions
  • Understanding donation

DECIDE

and register on the Australian
Organ Donor Register

  • Register your decision

DISCUSS

your donation decision with family and friends

  • Who needs to know?
  • How to start the discussion