Donation Essentials Blog

Community Impact Report from Jennifer Prinz, Donor Alliance CEO – Saving More Lives Than Ever Before in 2021!

Community Impact Reportcommunity impact report from desk of jennifer prinz ceo donor alliance saving lives than ever before in 2021Thank you for your partnership in saving lives and providing hope in 2021!

Hope is a word we often hear at Donor Alliance. The ripple effect of hope is intangible and hard to represent on a fact sheet. As we share the impacts made by the efforts of our dedicated staff and our healthcare partners who work tirelessly to save lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation, please imagine how these efforts also provide hope to donor families. One of our Advocates for Life, Allison Vogel, describes the hope she found after the tragic loss of her son, Tanner, in a car crash:

Allison said, “Knowing that he would be able to save the lives of others gave me hope and the courage to become an Advocate for organ and tissue donation. Being a part of the Donor Alliance family has been such a blessing, as I have met so many wonderful people and made so many friends along the way. My journey into living a life without my son has been so much more meaningful knowing that I am able to continue to advocate for, and educate others about, the gift of life.

Because of the commitment of the Colorado and Wyoming heroes who have chosen to register as organ, eye and tissue donors, Donor Alliance coordinated another record setting year for organ donation in 2021. Donor Alliance saw a 9% increase in organ donors and facilitated more transplants than ever by 3%, exceeding the 2020 record. The generosity of 234 heroic organ donors and their families provided another record setting 642 lifesaving transplants. We were able to honor the lives of 2,082 heroic tissue donors and their families resulting in over 156,150 tissue grafts becoming available for those in need of a lifesaving and enhancing transplant! In addition to facilitating local deceased donation, Donor Alliance helped coordinate 144 transplants from donors outside of our region, as well as assisting in 56 of the region’s 146 transplants from living donors.

The efforts to educate the community about tissue and organ donation and empower residents to register their donation decision resulted in Colorado and Wyoming leading the country for top donor designation rates claiming #1 in the U.S. and #4 respectively! These numbers reflect the deep community commitment to one another and support for organ and tissue donation! More than one million residents signed up to become donors in 2021, with 986,339 Coloradans and 83,227 Wyomingites adding their names to the organ, eye and tissue donor registries. With some of the highest donor designation rates, or percentage of individuals joining the state donor registries, in the country, at 67% and 62%, support for donation in Colorado and Wyoming far surpasses the national average of 49%, according to Donate Life America.

As long as there is still a need, our work continues. There are nearly 1,500 people waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant in our service area. However, through the generosity of our donors and their families, and the collaboration with our transplant center partners, there has been a dramatic 56% decrease in deaths on the Colorado organ transplant waitlist in 5 years compared to 2016. We appreciate the ongoing commitment and dedication from the Donor Alliance staff and our transplant center partners, to ensure our ability to save as many lives as possible through organ and tissue donation. The generosity of donors and their families and the determination and resiliency of the dedicated staff and volunteers offer hope to everyone touched by donation and transplantation.

Organ and Tissue Donation by the Numbers

In gratitude,

Jennifer Prinz

President and Chief Executive Officer

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