Ending the Wait Awards honor five Colorado hospitals

September 12, 2014

Donor Alliance and the Colorado Hospital Association recognize the outstanding efforts of healthcare organizations to make the gift of life possible in Colorado  

St. Anthony Hospital, Swedish Medical Center, The Medical Center of Aurora, Medical Center of the Rockies and The Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center 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 sixth 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 recorded more lifesaving organ donors than any other hospital in Colorado’s history with 23 organ donors whose gifts helped save 75 lives through transplanted organs. The hospital also had 61 tissue donors, helping to save and heal the lives of countless others.  Swedish Medical Center set a new standard in tissue donation, helping 83 tissue donors fulfill their wishes to help others. This organization also helped save 70 lives through the gifts of 22 organ donors.

Facilitating more tissue donors (57) than any other hospital of its size, the Medical Center of Aurora also earned recognition for its efforts in organ and tissue donation. The Medical Center of the Rockies had 38 tissue donors in 2013, also more than another other facility of equivalent size. The Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center also earned special recognition for its dedication to fulfilling family wishes surrounding organ and tissue donation.

“We are thrilled to once again publically recognize the Colorado hospitals who lead the way in helping advance our mission of saving lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation,” said Sue Dunn, president and CEO of Donor Alliance. “These healthcare organizations and professionals provide much of the crucial front-line education to patients and donor families, illuminating the amazing possibilities of donation and transplantation. As a result of their work, more patients in need are saved and healed through the gift of life. 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 a record 463 people received lifesaving organ transplants thanks to 148 selfless organ donors from our area. A record 1,177 tissue donors provided healing tissue to thousands in need. Also, at the close of 2013, slightly more than 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 2,500 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 result in saved and improved lives for countless patients and their families,” said Steven Summer, president and CEO of the Colorado Hospital Association. “CHA is proud to once again partner with Donor Alliance to recognize those hospital leaders and clinicians whose actions improve the well-being of our citizens.”

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) represents 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout Colorado. CHA partners with its members to work towards health reform, clinical excellence and performance improvement, and provides advocacy and representation at the state and federal level. Colorado hospitals and health systems are committed to providing coverage and access to safe, high-quality and affordable health care. In addition, Colorado hospitals have a tremendous impact on the state’s economic stability and growth, contributing to nearly every community across the state with 72,000 employees statewide. For more information, visit www.cha.com.

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.