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Aussies are being called on to register to be organ donors to help those in need

Aussies are being called on to register to be organ donors to help those in need

Only one-third of the population has signed up to the initiative but it's hoped that statistic will change during Donate Life Week.

Aussies are being called on to sign up to be organ donors and help out those who are critically in need.

Only one in 10 young Australians aged 14-16 have registered, but the team at Donate Life are determined to flip that statistic during their campaign this week.

Despite the fact that 80 per cent of Australians support organ tissue donation, only around one-third of the population are actual registered organ donors.

In an interview with Donate Life's CEO, Lucinda Barry AM, she spoke about some of the common misconceptions that are preventing young people from registering to become organ donors.

THE TOP THREE MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ORGAN DONATION

1- MYTH: It’s too complex.

“You know, we’re all busy in the world,” said Barry, but she says registering to become an organ donor can take one minute.

When the agency first started in 2009, if you wanted to register you had to log in to your Medicare account and register there, which Barry admits was quite a hassle for a lot of people both young and old.

However, Donate Life launched the One Minute Registration on their website in 2017 and now all you need to do is pop your name, email, birthday and Medicare number in and you're registered.

And, thanks to Covid-19, you can also register by ticking a box in the Medicare Express app near where you would have found your vaccination certificate.

“We had an 87 per cent increase in registrations compared to the year before during the pandemic,” said Barry.

“It’s literally ‘tick a box’ once you’re into the Medicare app.”

2- MYTH: If you're an organ donor, a doctor isn’t going to save you.

Barry says that organ donation isn’t even a topic of discussion until in the hospital and doctors have already determined that the person is not going to survive.

“We really don’t consider organ donation unless there is no chance of survival," she explained to LADbible.

She also wanted to debunk what happens to someone when they do become an organ donor.

“It’s a normal operation that you do in a hospital with a surgeon,” she said.

“Some people think they’re going to be quite disfigured after they’ve been through a donation operation but that’s just not it. There is absolute respect and care for organ donors.”

3- MYTH: There’s no need to sign up right now.

“When you're that age, the last thing you want to consider or talk about is dying,” Barry tells us.

“But take some control because none of us know if we’re going to die and none of us know if we’re going to need to have a transplant.”

Around 1,800 people are currently on the organ waitlist, including 1,450 people waiting for kidneys and an additional 70 people on the waitlist for a heart.

If you do decide to become an organ donor, Donate Life encourages you to have a chat with your loved ones and families about your decision.

Your family will be asked to support your decision before organ donation goes ahead and they are more likely to agree if they knew you wanted to be a donor.

Could you donate one minute to give someone a lifetime?

Register at donatelife.gov.au or with three taps in your Medicare app.

Featured Image Credit: Donate Life. Neil Godwin/Future via Getty Images

Topics: Australia, Health, Good News