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Sunday, May 17, 2009

Be an organ donor...in Ontario, Canada.

In this case, I thought I'd let the pros do the talking...

Here’s how to indicate your wishes to be an organ and tissue donor in Ontario:

Talk to your family
- Once you have decided to become a donor, the most important step is talking to your family about your wishes. Even if you have documented your wishes by registering as a donor with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, it is important that your family knows about your decision. This is because hospital staff will talk with the next-of-kin of potential donors about what their loved one would have wanted. Out of respect for grieving families, the next-of-kin are asked to provide the final consent, even if there is a signed consent indicated on your health card.

Register your consent to save lives
- Have your consent linked to your health card in the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care centralized data bank so that it is accessible 24/7. Registering your consent to donate means your family will have the comfort of knowing that they are supporting your wishes and will be relieved of the burden to make that decision on your behalf.

- The Gift of Life Consent Form 3750-84 is available through the Ministry's website at http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/public/forms/form_menus/ohip_fm.html ; available at your local Service Ontario Health Card Services -OHIP Office or outreach site in Ontario; and through Trillium Gift of Life Network by calling 416-363-4001 or Toll-free 1-800-263-2833, and through our website at www.giftoflife.on.ca - or send an e-mail to info@giftoflife.on.ca requesting that a consent form be mailed to you. The completed form should be returned to the address on the form.

- A donor card is included with each new driver's license or license renewal mailed in Ontario

Please have this conversation with your family. Please register your consent. And please make sure you are marked as a "DONOR" on your license.

This is the greatest gift you will ever give someone. It's still the greatest gift I ever received, although my U2 IPOD was a close second...

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