The Union Recorder

Columns

April 29, 2014

ORMC: ORMC provides gift of life through organ donation information

MILLEDGEVILLE — Thanks to the generosity of an organ donor, Jackie DeLoach is enjoying a second chance at life. Twenty-two years ago, just 12 days after giving birth to her daughter, Megan, Jackie was diagnosed with postpartum cardiomyopathy — heart failure. Her heart functioned at only 50 percent and she needed a heart transplant to survive.

A remarkable five days later Jackie received the gift of life.

“I’m so thankful for my donor family. I thank the Lord every day,” she says.

Today, Jackie not only is grateful for her own renewed health, she is appreciative of the opportunity to watch Megan grow into a woman and start her own family. Jackie’s hobby is her family; she loves spending time with them saying, “Life is precious; never take it for granted.”

This April, during the federally sanctioned National Donate Life Month, Oconee Regional Medical Center (ORMC) and LifeLink of Georgia honors the spirit of those individuals who make transplants possible — organ, tissue and eye donors. We celebrate the lives of those who received their second chance - and finally, we call attention to the more than 121,000 - more than 4,200 of whom are local — men, women and children who still wait across the United States.  

“Oconee Regional Medical Center is an amazing hospital,” states Chuck Massey, hospital development liaison for LifeLink of Georgia. “Their commitment to their patients and those in need is apparent. They work so hard to save the life of each patient. However, once those efforts are exhausted and organ donation becomes an option, ORMC is equally committed to saving the lives of others through transplantation.”

ORMC provides education about the life saving gift of organ donation. Transplant recipients and donor families are included at hospital health fairs and LifeLink of Georgia is on hand to provide information about organ and tissue donation.

There is no cost to the donor’s family for organ and/or tissue donation and one person has the potential to save or improve the lives of up to 60 people. Almost everyone can donate to help others, regardless of age or past medical history. In fact, age is rarely a factor when determining who can give the gift of life. Additionally, all major religions support donation as an act of charity. Organ donation, with the primary exception of living donation, takes place after death and provides the gift of life to tens of thousands each year through heart, kidney, lung, liver, pancreas and intestine transplants. To become a donor join the four million Georgians already registered to save lives. Sign up on Georgia’s donor registry when you renew your driver license or identification card, or visit www.donatelifegeorgia.org.

For more information about organ and tissue donation, call Chuck Massey, hospital development liaison, LifeLink of Georgia at 770-225-5465 or visit the website at www.lifelinkfound.org.

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