Sault Area Hospital recognized for organ donation efforts
Sault Area Hospital is being hailed as a champion of organ and tissue donation by the Trillium Gift of Life Network. The hospital is being recognized for its efforts to integrate organ and tissue donation into end-of-life care.
The hospital is being praised on two fronts: exceeding the provincial conversion rate of potential donors becoming actual donors, and for facilitating organ donation discussions with patients nearing end-of-life.
The hospital's director of clinical programs said the latter can be very challenging work for staff.
"It is not easy for the families and loved ones either, and I am quite proud of the work that we do here," said Mindy Lindstedt. "We do often get recognition and thanks from patients and families for how well we've navigated some of those conversations and made these decisions easier on them."
Lindstedt and the hospital are encouraging everyone to register to donate organs and tissue at BeADonor.ca.
Deanna Lynn knows the importance of organ donation, receiving a lung transplant in 2012. The Orillia native remembers what it was like to take her first breath with her new lung.
"I automatically filled with such joy, I can't explain it," said Lynn. "My whole being filled with such joy that I took my first breath without help."
Lynn said she had only months to live when she received her transplant, and is forever grateful to the donor's family. Getting a new lease on life included watching one of her sons get married.
"I was on oxygen when my eldest son got married and that was horrid, walking down the aisle holding oxygen and can't breathe," she said. "But the second son after my transplant ... I've had a baby granddaughter, my other son is getting married pretty soon, I've been travelling."
Meantime, officials at Sault Area Hospital said the city exceeds provincial donor numbers with a 48 per cent registration rate, placing the Soo at 73 out of 170 communities in Ontario.