April 8, 2009
The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has launched a new campaign to boost organ, tissue and eye donor registration. With nearly 9,000 people in Texas waiting for life-saving organs, health officials say there is a critical shortage of organs available for transplants. DSHS is urging people to register online at the state’s official Web site for organ donor registration, www.DonateLifeTexas.org, or at their local driver license office.
“Talk to your family. Go online. Learn about organ donation,” said Evelyn Delgado, assistant commissioner for Family and Community Health Services. “It only takes a few minutes to sign up, and you just might save someone’s life.” Last year more than 500 people in Texas died waiting for organ transplants.
The campaign, which begins this month and runs until August, uses radio and television advertising, community outreach and Web sites to encourage people to register as organ donors.
The official statewide registry of donors is called The Glenda Dawson Donate Life – Texas Registry. More than 270,000 people in Texas are registered.
“We’d like to see that number grow,” Delgado said. “The registry is still fairly new. Many people support the idea of organ donation but have not taken the steps to register.”
The registry is named in memory of State Rep. Dawson, a kidney transplant recipient, who championed the cause of organ donation. The Texas Legislature mandated the creation of the statewide registry, which began Sept. 1, 2006, and stipulated in May 2007 that it be renamed in Dawson’s memory.
(News media: For more information contact Carrie Williams, Assistant Press Officer, 512-458-7400.)