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A Message from the Wyoming Department of Health

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visit www.health.wyo.gov

Thomas O. Forslund, DirectorGovernor Matthew H. Mead

March 15, 2017

WB-2017-032

 

Dear Parents:

As the State Health Officer and Administrator of the Public Health Division (PHD) within the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH), I am pleased to provide this important information on becoming an organ donor. Learning to drive and getting a driver license is an important step in your teen’s life. Your teen will be asked to check “yes” or “no” for organ, eye, and tissue donation when applying for a new driver license. The need for lifesaving organs is a public health crisis in our country; nearly 200 people in Wyoming are currently waiting for a lifesaving transplant. In order to help your teen make an educated decision about registering as a donor, it is important to take time to discuss this topic. Below are some facts to help get the conversation started:

  • Your teen’s decision to be a donor will not affect medical care. Doctors and nurses caring for patients before death are not involved in the donation process.
  • All major religions support organ, eye, and tissue donation, and many view it as an act of love and generosity.
  • Just one donor can save up to eight lives through organ donation and save or heal more than 75 lives through eye and tissue donation.
  • There are nearly 120,000 people in the United States waiting for a life-saving organ transplant, and thousands more that could benefit from lifesaving/healing eye and tissue donations.
  • Every 10 minutes someone is added to the national transplant waiting list and 22 people die each day while waiting for a transplant.
  • Until the age of 18, parents decide whether their child may be a donor, regardless of registry status. Once an individual turns 18 and elects to join the registry, his/her decision is treated as an advanced directive.

The decision to save and heal lives through organ, eye, and tissue donation is one of the most important choices your teen can make. The WDH hopes that you will respectfully consider and support your teen’s decision. To learn more about organ, eye, and tissue donation and the Donate Life Wyoming registry, please visit www.DonateLifeWyoming.org.

Sincerely,

Wendy E. Braund, MD, MPH, MSEd, FACPM

State Health Officer and Senior Administrator

Public Health Division

State Health Officer • Public Health Division

6101 Yellowstone Road, Suite 420 • Cheyenne WY 82002

E-Mail: wdh@wyo.gov • WEB Page: www.health.wyo.gov

Toll Free l-866-571-fJ944 • Main Number (307) 777-6340 • FAX (307) 777-8264