2014 Ending the Wait Awards Honor Colorado Hospitals

September 11, 2015

On the morning of September 11, 2015, St. Anthony Hospital, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Medical Center of the Rockies, Swedish Medical Center President/CEO Mary White and University of Colorado Hospital President/CEO John Harney were recognized with Ending the Wait awards for their outstanding achievements in facilitating the gift of life through organ and tissue donation in Colorado. The awards, now in their seventh year, are presented annually by Donor Alliance, the federally-designated organ procurement organization serving Colorado, and the Colorado Hospital Association (CHA).

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.

Last year, St. Anthony Hospital was able to transplant nearly four organs per donor. Their 11 organ donors resulted in 40 lives saved through organ transplantation in 2014. The Medical Center of the Rockies in Loveland once again led the way in tissue donation for a facility of their size with 56 tissue donors in 2014, a 47% increase over the previous year. Children’s Hospital Colorado also earned special recognition for its dedication to organ and tissue donation with 100% of organ referrals being made in a timely manner.

Led by President/Chief Executive Officer Mary White, Swedish Medical Center once again set the standard in terms of tissue donation, helping 113 tissue donors fulfill their wishes to help others. This organization also helped save numerous other lives through the gifts of 14 organs donors that resulted in 45 organs transplanted. Ms. White will be honored with the 2015 Ending the Wait Senior Leader Award for her long reputation as someone who has demonstrated exemplary hospital leadership in institutional processes that improve organ and tissue donation.

The University of Colorado Hospital (UCH) has long been a leader in organ and tissue donation and transplantation. Led by President/Chief Executive Officer John Harney, UCH was able to transplant 14 organs from six donors in 2014. In addition, the team at UCH also facilitated life-changing gifts from 65 tissue donors. Mr. Harney will also be recognized with a 2015 Ending the Wait Senior Leadership Award.

“It is our honor to recognize these exemplary Colorado hospitals who continuously lead the way in helping advance Donor Alliance’s mission of saving lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation,” said Sue Dunn, president and CEO of Donor Alliance. “Because of the tireless efforts of these organizations and individuals, countless lives are saved and healed through donation and transplantation. We’re proud to partner with these industry leaders and 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 50 through the gift of tissue donation. Last year a record 1,590 tissue donors provided healing tissue to thousands in need. In addition, 337 people received lifesaving organ transplants thanks to 109 selfless organ donors from our area. At the close of 2014, nearly 68 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 2,500 people in Colorado waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant, so Donor Alliance and CHA know their efforts are not complete.

“The coordinated efforts of Donor Alliance and Colorado hospitals save and improve lives for countless patients and their families each and every year,” said Steven Summer, president and CEO of the Colorado Hospital Association. “CHA is proud to once again partner with Donor Alliance to congratulate hospital and health system leaders and clinicians who are committed to extending and enhancing life through their support of organ donation.”

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.

About the Colorado Hospital Association

The Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) is the leading voice of Colorado’s hospital and health system community. Representing over 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout the state, CHA serves as a trusted, credible and reliable resource on health issues, hospital data and trends for its members, media, policymakers and the general public. Through CHA, Colorado’s hospitals and health systems work together in their shared commitment to improve health and health care in Colorado.

About Donor Alliance

Donor Alliance is a non-profit organization dedicated to saving lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation. As the organ and tissue procurement agency for Colorado and most of Wyoming, Donor Alliance serves more than 5.8 million residents and more than 100 hospitals. Donor Alliance adheres to the highest medical and ethical standards: respectfully working with the families of organ and tissue donors, maintaining partnerships with hospitals and educating residents on the life-saving benefits of donation and inspiring them to sign up on the state’s donor registry. Colorado and Wyoming boast some of the highest rates of donor registration in the country, which directly translates to more lives saved and healed through organ and tissue transplantation. Donor Alliance is one of 58 federally designated organizations of its kind in the United States. For more information visit DonorAlliance.org or the Donate Life Colorado or Donate Life Wyoming Facebook pages.