Yes, older people can be organ donors!

August 15, 2016


Dear Friends,

As you probably know, the New York healthcare proxy -- click here to see the form on the Dep't of Health's website -- includes a section in which one can indicate one's wishes in regard to organ donation.  Many clients tell me that they assume that their organs will be of no use to anyone at the time of their death solely because their organs will be "too old," and therefore they don't wish to sign the portion of the proxy that relates to organ donation.  But as the New York Times recently pointed out, this assumption is unfounded in many cases.

In a recent piece entitled "Don't Throw Out Your Organ Donor Card After 65" (click here for a link to the article), the Times profiled people who received transplants from older donors, including liver donors who were aged 84 and 90.  Dr. Dorry Segev, who directs the transplantation research group at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, told the Times author that it's "frustrating to see people die every day on our waiting lists, and to know that older people could have been deceased donors and weren’t.”

So I'm going to show this Times piece to clients who say that they would sign up to be organ donors except for the fact that they're "too old."  And you should too -- after all, we never know when one of us may be on the receiving end!

All the best,