How likely is it that you could be a donor? Why does it matter?

I’ve posted this in other places but here it is again.  Very few people will every become organ donors.  Less than .003% probability.

Source:  Howard, D.H. and Byrne, M.M. (2007).  Should We Promote Organ Donor Registries When So Few Registrants Will End Up Being Donors?  Medical Decision Making, 27, 243-249.

Registration Matters

This low probability is one of several reasons why donor registration matters so much.  Since the odds are that very, very, very few people can be donors, it takes ALOT of registrations to make a difference.

From the same research by Howard and Byrne, you can see that it takes at least 40-50% of the population to be registered to even begin to have more organs available for transplant.

Hypothesized relationship between registry enrollment and organ supply (Howard & Byrne, 2007)

Now compare that with this chart showing the percentages of population registered by state.

U.S. Donor Designation by State, (Larson & Bosch (2011)

Larson, S.M. and Bosch, D. (2011, March 29).  Donor Designation.

To save lives, we simply must figure out how to encourage donor registration.


1 thought on “How likely is it that you could be a donor? Why does it matter?

  1. Pingback: “If you are not an organ donor when you die, you are taking a lot of people with you.” | Wendy J. Manuel

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