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Ending the Wait Awards honor Colorado Hospitals for donation achievements

On September 13, St. Anthony Hospital, Littleton Adventist Hospital, Exempla Lutheran Medical Center, Parkview Medical Center and Rose Medical Center were recognized with Ending the Wait awards for their outstanding efforts in promoting organ and tissue donation in Colorado. The awards, now in their fifth year, are presented annually by Donor Alliance, the organ procurement organization serving Colorado and most of Wyoming, and the Colorado Hospital Association (CHA).

Donor Alliance’s Chief Operation Officer Jennifer Prinz and CHA President and CEO Steven Summer presented the awards during the CHA’s 88th Annual Meeting in Vail, Colorado. The organizations created the awards to  recognize the commitment of Colorado hospitals, medical centers and healthcare professionals to saving lives through organ and tissue donation. The selections are based on hospital size, trauma center designation, total number of donors and organs transplanted and are awarded annually to hospitals that demonstrate extraordinary efforts in organ and tissue donation.

St. Anthony Hospital recorded more lifesaving organs transplanted than any other hospital in 2012 with 71 donations from 20 different organ donors, as well as 61 tissue donors. Littleton Adventist Hospital facilitated seven organ donors resulting in 16 organs transplanted. In 2012, Exempla Lutheran Medical Center had 50 tissue donors, helping to save and heal innumerable lives. Pueblo’s Parkview Medical Center showcased its extraordinary commitment to organ and tissue donation by facilitating the transfer of an organ donor to the state-of-the-art Donor Alliance Recovery Center in Denver. Rose Medical Center’s staff is recognized for honoring patient wishes in end-of-life care with unwavering support of patients’ desire for organ and tissue donation.

“Together with the Colorado Hospital Association, we are honored to once again publically recognize hospitals in our service area who have risen as leaders in donation and transplantation,” said Sue Dunn, president and CEO of Donor Alliance. “Outstanding leadership, as demonstrated by these award winners, is what helps save hundreds of lives through transplantation in Colorado each year. We look forward to continuing to strengthen our partnership with hospitals and transplant centers in working toward our ultimate goal of ending the wait for lifesaving transplants.”

Each donor has the potential to save up to eight lives through organ donation and save and heal more than 100 through the gift of tissue donation. Last year in Colorado 126 organ donors and 1,017 tissue donors provided vital organs and healing tissue to thousands in need. Also, at the close of 2012, nearly 67 percent of Colorado’s licensed drivers and ID card holders had joined the Donate Life Colorado Organ and Tissue Donor Registry. However, there are still currently more than 2,200 people in Colorado waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant, so Donor Alliance and CHA know their efforts are not complete.

“Donor Alliance does outstanding work on a truly life-saving cause for many Coloradans,” said Steven Summer, president and CEO of the Colorado Hospital Association. “CHA is proud to again partner with Donor Alliance to recognize outstanding health care facilities and leaders for their important efforts and contributions to our citizens’ well-being.”

For more information about organ and tissue donation, please visit DonorAlliance.org. To register to be an organ and tissue donor, please visit DonateLifeColorado.org or call 303-329-4747 for more information.