Donna living proof organ donation can save your life
IT ONLY takes one person to make a difference in someone’s and it only takes one organ donor to save ten lives.
For Juwunkarra Family Support Service worker and Mossman mother of three Donna Elliott, her organ donor saved her life when she was struggling with kidney failure in 2005.
“I was extremely ill, my weight dropped down to 43kg and I was on a home dialysis machine every day,” she said.
According to DonateLife Queensland there are over 1700 Australians currently waiting for life saving organ transplants.
Fifty of those waiting are children and more than one person will die every week waiting for an organ.
Donna had made the decision to go on the transplant list and waited almost two years to receive a kidney.
“We made the decision to go on the transplant list as my illness was seriously affecting my health and my family,” she said.
“There was constant vomiting, headaches, weight loss, loss of energy and emotional pressures on everybody.”
Police notified her at 1am on October 20, 2007 that an organ was waiting for her in Brisbane and to get there as soon as possible.
Her family flew to Brisbane at 5.30am and she received her kidney transplant the same day.
“I get teary when I talk about it still after all these years. The difference that it made in our lives is unbelievable,” she said. “This is the first time in a long time that I felt like a strong and healthy woman, my children have their mother back, my husband has his wife back and I am now a grandmother - he saved my life.”
Minister for Human Services Tanya
My children have their mother back, my husband has his wife back and I am now a grandmother - he saved my life
– Donna Elliott
kidney donor recipient
Donna Elliott Plibersek said new Organ and Tissue Authority research shows that of the majority of organ and tissue donors, less than half have registered their donation decision.
“The 5.7 million Australian who have registered their donation decision are encouraged to check and update their registration details and ensure family members know and accept their donation decision,” she said.
Clinical Nurse Consultant from DonateLife Queensland Loren Ginders said that the most important message is that people need to inform their family members about their decision to donate organs and register that decision.
“It is also important for people to know that it is no longer shown on their driver licence, a lot of people still think that by ticking the box it means you are an organ donor, but it is now regarded as uninformed consent,” she said.
“We need to be able to ask family members, partner or friends about your wishes to ensure to that your wish to donate is carried out.”
To register on the Australian Organ Donor Register or to update your details visit www.donorregister.gov.au , a Medicare office or call 1800 777 203.
New lease of life: