The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Kevin Riordan recently reported on patient Jeffrey Hyman, who is waiting for a life-saving kidney transplant.
Riordan writes that many patients in need of a transplant are actively looking for a person willing to donate one of their kidneys. A living kidney donation is safe and the donor’s remaining kidney automatically increases in size to compensate. In addition, a kidney from a live donor could last up to twice as long as a deceased donor kidney, which is especially important for younger recipients. Jeffrey has been spreading the word to family and friends about his need for a lifesaving transplant through social media.
Kristi Caldararo, associate administrator of the Jefferson Transplant Institute, said “We urge people to have a live-donor champion—someone who will advocate on their behalf…We help the champion with writing blog posts, working with alumni associations or churches, and with social media, which is a great tool to get the word out.”
According to the National Kidney Foundation’s website, about 100,000 Americans are awaiting a kidney transplant. But annually, fewer than 20,000 transplants are performed; daily, 13 people die while awaiting the lifesaving procedure.