Record Number of Lives Saved Through Organ Donation in Colorado and Wyoming in 2022
Local organ procurement organization marks eighth consecutive year of growth with record-breaking year
DENVER – January 10, 2023 – Donor Alliance, the nonprofit organ and tissue procurement organization serving Colorado and most of Wyoming, recorded another record-breaking year for organ donation with 829 life-saving organs transplanted in 2022. The generosity of Coloradans and Wyomingites marked the region’s eighth consecutive year of growth and helped to contribute to a historic milestone as the U.S. officially surpassed one million transplants, according to the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS).
In 2022, the generosity of 278 heroic organ donors from Colorado and Wyoming resulted in 829 life-saving organ transplants. This is a 19% increase in donors and a 29% increase in transplants compared to 2021. In addition to the lives saved through organ donation, the organization also worked with 1,911 tissue donors and their families to recover lifesaving and healing tissues, which will help up to 143,000 more people in need.
“We continue to be amazed and inspired by the generosity of our organ and tissue donors and families, as well as by the residents in communities across our region. With another record-breaking year for organ donors and lives saved, 2022 was no exception,” said Jennifer Prinz, president and CEO, Donor Alliance. “Waitlist deaths continue to decline in Colorado and Wyoming due to the tireless dedication and efforts of our staff, transplant partners and the heroic residents throughout both states that have made the decision to register as organ, eye and tissue donors.”
To further support Donor Alliance’s continuous performance improvement efforts, the organization is implementing changes to make the system even better and welcomes a focus on innovation and ongoing research in the industry. Donor Alliance continues to invest in tools, technology and personnel to increase lifesaving potential. In 2022, Donor Alliance partnered with transplant centers to maximize transplantation with donors after circulatory death (DCD) using machine preservation. The organization also elevated medical director Dr. Paul Lange to Chief Medical Officer, which has allowed Donor Alliance to grow its physician services, providing professional education on donation and transplantation throughout the community and increasing advance practice clinical skills.
In addition to a record number of lives saved, Colorado and Wyoming remained two of the most generous states in the country when it comes to registering to become organ and tissue donors. Both Colorado and Wyoming maintained some of the nation’s highest donor designation rates, or the percentage of individuals joining the state donor registries, at 66% and 61% respectively—well above the national average of 49%, according to Donate Life America.
Organ and Tissue Donation by the Numbers
Even with the achievements in donation and transplantation in 2022, nearly 1,500 people across Colorado and Wyoming continue to wait for lifesaving transplants. With these patients in mind, Donor Alliance continues its efforts to educate the public on the need for donation and collaborate closely with acute care hospitals, four transplant centers, the division of motor vehicles and other partners through 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.
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 6.2 million residents and more than 120 hospitals. Donor Alliance adheres to the highest medical, regulatory and ethical standards, and meets every performance standard. By respectfully working with the families of organ and tissue donors, maintaining partnerships with hospitals, educating residents on the life-saving benefits of donation and inspiring them to sign up on the state’s donor registry, Donor Alliance is able to save lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation. 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 56 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.