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Seeing the Impact of Donation

Last week I had an opportunity to travel with four of our partner hospitals to Dallas for the 6th National Learning Congress on Organ Donation.

Each hospital was being recognized for their efforts working with Lifeline of Ohio to provide organ donation options to the families they serve. These hospitals have the unique understanding that when every attempt to save a life has failed, that life can have a profound impact on others when organ donation occurs.

Dorrie Dils and the HRSA Award Honorees

St. Rita’s Medical Center, Mount Carmel East, and Riverside Methodist Hospital were each awarded a silver medal for meeting two of the three national goals based on improving donation rates, increasing the number of organs donated and expanding clinical processes for recovering organs, The Ohio State University Medical Center was awarded a bronze for meeting one of those goals.

But more important than the awards, was the opportunity to get out of our daily routines and realize the amazing impact organ donation makes on real people.

While in Dallas we had the pleasure of meeting a young woman who received a lung transplant. She shared with us her journey to transplantation all that she endured. What made her story even more remarkable was that she was an opera singer; she said she had spent a lifetime to train her lungs and, although they were killing her, it was incredibly frightening to give them up.

She sang for us in Dallas and we were moved beyond words. Her ability to not just breathe, but to sing again is thanks to a donor, their family, and the nurses and doctors who helped fulfill her donor’s wishes to give the “Gift of Life.” I wish we could provide every nurse or physician who has taken care of an organ donor the opportunity to be touched by a story like this young woman, so they can see how important their work really is.

– Dorrie Dils, chief clinical executive, Lifeline of Ohio

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