Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,
Did you know that there are more than 112,000 people in the U.S. currently waiting for a life-saving organ transplant? Approximately 4,000 of these people are right here in Florida. Every day on average, 18 people die because not enough organs are available for transplant. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of others whose lives would benefit from the gift of tissue and eye donations continue to wait and hope.
April is recognized as National Donate Life Month. In observance of National Donate Life Month and in honor of all those who have given the gift of life, UHealth – University of Miami Health System is joining the national Workplace Partnership for Life campaign coordinated locally by our Department of Surgery’s Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency. The campaign works with UHealth to educate employees and our community about the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation and to provide members of our community with the opportunity to register as an organ donor. The goal of the campaign is straightforward: to increase the number of registered donors in the country by 20 million by the end of 2012.
The Workplace Partnership for Life campaign involves all of us. The lives of many co-workers and friends on the Miller School of Medicine and UHealth campus have been touched by donation and transplantation. Our UHealth community is unique in the nation as it is the only medical school that has its own organ procurement organization, tissue bank, eye bank, and transplant center (Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency, UM Tissue Bank, Florida Lions Eye Bank and the Miami Transplant Institute at UM/Jackson Memorial Hospital, respectively).
Together we can make a difference. Through organ and eye donations, one donor has the power to save up to eight lives and restore sight to two people. That same donor can enhance the lives of up to 250 more through tissue donation. By registering to be an organ and tissue donor, not only do you commit to saving and improving lives, you also provide the opportunity for your family to find comfort during a difficult time, knowing that your last wishes to be a donor were honored.
UHealth is excited to participate in this life-saving campaign, and as part of the initiative, we have committed to help increase the Donate Life Florida registry by 1,000 registrations.
Please join us for “Donate Life Day” on Friday, April 20, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Schoninger Research Quadrangle, and register as an organ and tissue donor. For more information about “Donate Life Day” activities and how to designate your wishes to be a donor, please visit www.laora.org, or call 1-800-232-2892.
Thank you for your dedication to our life-saving endeavors.
Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D.
Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean
University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
CEO, University of Miami Health System