VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Jan. 8, 2021) — LifeNet Health, Virginia’s federally designated Organ Procurement Organization (OPO), coordinated a record 616 organ transplants in 2020, exceeding the previous year’s record by 31 organs. It is the third consecutive record year for transplants in LifeNet Health’s service area. In all, 237 organ donors saved the lives of 555 patients — some of whom received multiple organs —through the selfless gift of donation.
“These donors provide an altruistic gift to patients who desperately need a second chance at life,” said LifeNet Health President and CEO Rony Thomas. "We are humbled by their kind decision to donate and are honored to be stewards of the selfless gifts they provide."
Successful transplants require the navigation of complex logistics and medical protocols. The record number of transplants and donors in 2020 reflects the strong partnerships between LifeNet Health and the hospitals and transplant centers throughout Virginia. Together, they persevered through the unusual challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic to honor each donor’s final wish to provide life to others.
“We are honored to be a part of this life-saving process and thankful to donors and families who provide hope to so many patients in need,” said LifeNet Health Vice President and OPO Executive Director Todd Hubler. “This achievement would not be possible without the unwavering commitment of our hospital and transplant center partners and their support for donation. Hundreds of people are alive today thanks to the teams’ tireless dedication and the donors’ inspiring generosity.”
There are more than 108,000 men, women and children in the U.S. waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. In Virginia, there are nearly 2,500 people on the transplant list. Every 10 minutes, another patient is added to the national list, with the need for kidney transplants being the most severe. In Virginia, more than 80 percent of patients on the waiting list need a kidney.
One donor can help save the lives of nine people with organ donation and give hope to more than 150 people through tissue donation. With 20 people dying every day because the organ they need is not available in time, more registered donors are needed. Sign up as a donor at the DMV, or go to RegisterMe.org to learn more and register.