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Why become a donor?

Every person who has a donor liver, a new lung or somebody else’s heart beating in their body knows that they owe their survival to a real lifesaver. Transplantations have been performed with increasing success in recent years due to advances in medicine and research. Today, patients with a donor organ have a much higher life expectancy and a significantly better quality of life than they had just a few years ago.

An organ donor can save the lives of up to seven people. In Switzerland, over 1,412 people are currently waiting for a new organ (as of December 2018). Around 100 people die every year because a suitable organ could not be found for them. These are all reasons to save somebody else’s life after your own death. In the event of a person’s death, if there is no donor card available (or it cannot be found) and if there is no record in the National Organ Donor Register, their next of kin must make the decision regarding organ donation on behalf of the deceased. This is why your next of kin need to be made aware of your wishes – you will be making the decision easier for them in a difficult moment.

The following stories from people who have received transplants show just how much can be achieved with organ donation. All these people have been given a second chance: they reveal what their lives were like before their transplantations, and what life is like now.