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Give gift of life, become organ donor

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By The Staff

My name is Ed Heins and I am a liver transplant recipient of 14 years. Did you know that every 11 minutes another person in this country is added to the transplant waiting list? Sadly, many will die before receiving a transplant.

You can help save lives by donating life and registering to become a donor. Before Jan. 14, South Carolina did not have an online organ and tissue donor registry. Now it does and you can sign up at www.Every11Minutes.org.

South Carolina joins the majority of the other states in this country with a registry by establishing the new S.C. Organ and Tissue Donor Registry. Even if you have a heart and “Y” on your driver’s license, this information was not transferred from the S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles. Thus you must now register your legal consent to be a donor in order to be in the new confidential and secure donor registry.

Registering is easy, quick, and heroic. You can register now by visiting the www.Every11Minutes.org Web site or by obtaining, renewing or changing your SC driver’s license ID at any SCDMV office.

You may also register when conducting business through the SCDMV Web site. If you go visit the SCDMV, a new logo representing legal consent will be placed on your license ID. It will be a heart and “Y” surrounded by a circle with 11 ticks in it.

If you do not have access to a computer at your house, I suggest asking a friend or relative to help you register. Also, many public libraries have computers with Internet access that will allow you to sign up on the donor registry.

When I first began volunteering for S.C. Organ Procurement Organization, LifePoint, there were about 33,000 people waiting on an organ transplant. As of today, more than 100,000 people across the country need an organ transplant and nearly 800 of those are on the S.C. Transplant Waiting List.

Please know that every 90 minutes another person dies while waiting for an organ transplant. I am alive today and now volunteer for LifePoint and Donate Life South Carolina because someone decided to give me the gift of life. Please consider doing the same and register today to become an organ/tissue donor.