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Donor Alliance Saves and Heals More Lives Than Ever Before in 2019 - Colorado & Wyoming

2019 Most Successful Year Ever Recorded for Organ and Tissue Donation – Colorado and Wyoming

2019 DA slide

Donor Alliance, the federally designated non-profit organization that facilitates organ and tissue donation in Colorado and most of Wyoming, recorded the most successful year the region has ever seen in 2019, helping save the lives of 596 people through organ donation and transplantation and save and heal thousands more through tissue donation!

Each day, our staff works tirelessly to save the nearly 2,000 lives in our region waiting for a lifesaving transplant while also supporting the families of donors that lean on us to honor their loved one’s heroic decision to become a donor. – Sue Dunn, Donor Alliance President and CEO.

Record-Breaking Year: Organ Donation & Transplantation

2019 Organ Data %

Through the generous gifts from organ donors and their families, Donor Alliance facilitated more organ transplants than ever by 19%, exceeding the previous high set in 2018, and a 29% increase since 2013.

Ultimately, 22% more lives were saved through organ donation and transplantation in 2019 than ever before!

2019 Organ Data Numbers

  • Organ Donors – a record 191 heroic organ donors
  • Organs Transplanted – donations saved 596 lives

Annual Snapshot

ORGAN Donation2013201420152016201720182019
Local Organ Donors148109134139144160191
Kidney Transplants241176226233246268325
Liver Transplants1097279848898119
Heart Transplants43375454435963
Lung Transplants45425944245272
Pancreas Transplants24910861115
Small Intestine Transplant1101012
Total Local Organs Transplanted463337428424407489596

The organization also facilitated the import of 18 organs for transplant and 94 flyouts.

ORGAN Data20152016201720182019
Flyouts  838394
Imports  484818
Transplants from Imports8180142167130

In addition, 151 living donors in Colorado gave the gift of life.

ORGAN Data20152016201720182019
Living Donors112123160167151


Record-Breaking Year: Tissue Donation & Transplantation

2019 Tissue Data

In 2019, there were 21% more heroic tissue donors over the highest ever year with 2,118 tissue donors, including 1,950 skin donors and 127 heart valve donors.

Through procedures like skin grafting and reconstructive surgeries, these lifesaving and healing donations will help thousands of people regain mobility and lead active lives after disease or trauma.

  • Tissue Donorsan amazing 2,118 heroic tissue donors
  • Tissues Transplantedtens of thousands

Annual Snapshot:

TISSUE Donation 2013201420152016201720182019
Local Tissue Donors1,1771,5901,6741,7101,7521,6842,118
Bone Donors6608309118228329021,109
Skin Donors1,0761,3861,4011,3201,5031,5121,950
Heart Valve Donors11111411716814095127
Joint Restoration Donors106112119899790121


Record-Breaking Year: Wyoming Hits Record High Donor Designation Rate (DDR) & Colorado Remains in Position to Lead the Nation Once Again

2019 DDR Data

Achieving our simple, yet powerful mission is made possible by the incredible generosity of the Colorado and Wyoming residents that have signed up to join the organ and tissue donor registry.

Colorado and Wyoming continue to maintain some of the highest donor designation rates, or percentage of individuals joining the state donor registries, in the country.

Colorado reached number one in the nation in 2018 with a 69% DDR and Wyoming set another record this year at 63%, the highest rate ever for the state – both states far surpass the national average of 49%, according to Donate Life America.

  • More than one million residents signed up to become donors in 2019
  • There were 1,003,817 names in Colorado and 88,922 names in Wyoming added to the organ and tissue donor registries
  • The donor designation rate reached 69% in Colorado
  • The donor designation rate reached a record 63% in Wyoming

This support, combined with our strong hospital partnerships and mission-driven culture, helped to save and heal more lives in our region than ever before.

In addition to the incredible local support for donation, the progress made this year is also a result of a number of process improvements made through the organization’s decade-long performance excellence journey, which culminated with a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award in 2018.

These advancements included better processes to identify and refer potential organ donors after cardiac death and streamlined communications with hospital partners to improve the timely notification of potential organ and tissue donors.

As medical advances help eligibility criteria expand, medical professionals are also able to maximize organ and tissue donation more than ever before, allowing more people to give the gift of life.

How You Can Help

Despite the year’s incredible achievements for donation and transplantation across the region, nearly 2,000 people in the area continue to wait for a lifesaving transplant.

With these patients in mind, Donor Alliance continues to tirelessly educate the public on the need for donation and collaborate closely with 115 acute care hospitals, four transplant centers, division of motor vehicles and other partners throughout the two-state area.

For more information about donation, or to sign up as an organ, eye and tissue donor, please visit DonateLifeColorado.org or DonateLifeWyoming.org.