What is DonateLife Week?
DonateLife Week is Australia's national awareness week to promote organ and tissue donation. In 2014, DonateLife Week will be held from Sunday 23 February to Sunday 2 March.
DonateLife Week is a key part of the Australian Government's national reform agenda to increase organ and tissue donation and transplantation outcomes and is led by the Organ and Tissue Authority.
Events will be taking place across Australia during DonateLife Week to encourage all Australians to have the chat with their loved ones about their decision to become an organ and tissue donor.
Why is this important?
Organ and tissue donation saves lives. One donor can transform the lives of up to 10 people and significantly improve the lives of many more.
People of any age regardless of gender, ethnicity or religion can one day need a life-transforming or life-saving transplant. Around 1,500 people are on Australian organ transplant waiting lists at any one time.
Very few people – less than 1 per cent – will die in hospital in the specific circumstances where organ donation is possible. Many more have the opportunity to donate tissue.
The majority of Australians are both willing to become organ and tissue donors and know that family confirmation is required for donation to take place.
To optimise every potential organ and tissue donor, every Australian family needs to ask and know their loved ones' donation decisions.
Although three in four Australians have discussed the subject with family members, only 53% of people know their loved ones' donation decisions.
Importantly, 96% of those who do know their loved ones' donation decision say they would uphold their decision.
Help us encourage Australians to have the chat
This DonateLife Week, we're asking you to have the chat with your loved ones so that they know your donation decision. You also need to ask and know their donation decision.
This week is a good opportunity to register your donation decision on the
Australian Organ Donor Register, and encourage your loved ones to register their decision.
Every Australian family needs to know the donation decisions of their loved ones. This is because, in Australia, the family of every potential donor is always asked to confirm the donation wishes of their loved one before organ and/or tissue donation can proceed.
Families that have discussed and know each other's donation decision are much more likely to uphold that decision.
Having the chat with your family during DonateLife Week will help you be prepared, should you ever be asked to confirm a loved one's donation decision.
It's a chat that could one day save lives.
The DonateLife Week Tool Kit
The DonateLife Week Tool Kit is a free resource to help you promote DonateLife Week and its key messages in your workplace, local media, on your Facebook and Twitter pages, local schools, hospitals and in your community.
The DonateLife Book of Life
The DonateLife Book of Life contains stories of hope about organ and tissue donation written by everyday Australians. Donor recipients, donor families, live donors and people touched by organ and tissue donation share their experiences in the DonateLife Book of Life.