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Sigrid Fry-Revere Named Advisor to LifeSharers

05-07-2008 12:55 PM CET | Health & Medicine

Press release from: LifeSharers

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Sigrid Fry-Revere, a medical ethicist and health care policy analyst, has agreed to serve as an advisor to LifeSharers. LifeSharers is a non-profit network of organ donors that gives registered organ donors preferred access to transplantable organs. It was launched in 2002 to help alleviate the shortage of human organs needed for transplant operations. That shortage kills over 8,000 Americans every year.

“LifeSharers exemplifies social cooperation at its best,” says Ms. Fry-Revere. “It shows that human ingenuity can overcome government-imposed scarcity by finding creative ways for people to help themselves by helping others.”

Transplantable organs have been in short supply ever since the federal government made paying for organs illegal in 1984. The national transplant waiting list will soon hit 100,000 people, and more than half of those people will die before they get a transplant.

LifeSharers members agree to donate their organs when they die. They also direct that their organs be offered first to other LifeSharers members, if any member who needs them is a suitable match, before offering them to non-members. By giving registered organ donors preferred access to their organs, LifeSharers members create an incentive for non-donors to become donors.

“Incentives are needed to increase the number of organ donors,” says David J. Undis, Executive Director of LifeSharers. “If altruism could fix the organ shortage, the shortage wouldn’t exist in the first place.” Every year, Americans bury or cremate 20,000 organs that could have saved lives. Only about 50% of adult Americans have agreed to donate their organs when they die.

“LifeSharers helps organ donors donate their organs to each other,” adds Ms. Fry-Revere. “This is a grass-roots solution to a problem that Washington hasn’t been able to fix.”

“LifeSharers offers a compelling trade,” adds Mr. Undis. “If you’ll donate your organs through LifeSharers after you’ve died, LifeSharers will increase your chances of getting a transplant should you ever need one to live.”

LifeSharers membership is free and open to all at http://www.lifesharers.org or by calling 1-888-ORGAN88. There is no age limit, and parents can enroll their minor children. No one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition.

LifeSharers members receive an organ donor card, letters to share with family members and doctors, and language to attach to their durable power of attorney for healthcare.

The shortage of transplantable organs in the United States is large and growing larger every year. According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, over 99,000 Americans are now on the national transplant waiting list. 48,000 names will be added to the waiting list this year, while only about 30,000 people will receive transplants.

ABOUT SIGRID FRY-REVERE

Sigrid Fry-Revere is the former director of bioethics studies at the Cato Institute. She focuses on legal and policy issues in the life sciences with a particular emphasis on the social impact of new medical developments. Prior to joining Cato, she was a consultant to several hospitals, home health agencies, and hospices in the Washington, D.C. area. She has taught at the University of Virginia and George Mason University, and practiced FDA and health law at Arent, Fox, Kintner, Plotkin & Kahn. She has a Ph.D. in philosophy (bioethics) and a law degree from Georgetown University.

More information about Ms. Fry-Revere is available at http://www.cato.org/people/sigrid-fry-revere/

David J. Undis
Executive Director
LifeSharers
6509 Cornwall Drive
Nashville, TN 37205
phone 615-351-8622

ABOUT LIFESHARERS

LifeSharers is a 501(c)(3) non-profit network of organ donors. Membership in LifeSharers is free and open to all. LifeSharers does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, physical handicap, health status, marital status, or economic status. Since its launch on May 22, 2002, LifeSharers has attracted 11,289 members, including members in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The LifeSharers web site is at http://www.lifesharers.org.

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