|Stats & FAQ's|
Time Waiting for Organ Transplant
waiting time is calculated according to the length of time
Waiting Time (in Months)
Q: I currently have an organ donor decal on my CareCard. Do I still need to register and fill out the Organ Donor Registry form?
A: YES. The Organ Donor Registry replaced all previous ways of indicating your decision about organ donation. If you wish to be an organ donor, you can register online, or request registration forms by contacting BC Transplant at: BCTS_Webmaster@bcts.hnet.bc.ca , 604-877-2240 or toll free at 1-800-663-6189.
Q: How do I check to see if I am already registered?
You can verify your registration by visiting www.transplant.bc.ca or by calling BC Transplant 1-800-663-6189. You will need your Personal Health Number (BC CareCard).
How does anyone know if I am registered on the Organ Donor Registry?
Q: Is there an age limit to register for organ donation?
No, there is no age limit to register. The health of the organs rather
than the age of the individual will determine whether the organs can be
If I am a registered organ donor, will health care
providers make every effort to save my life?
Q: If I die of a heart attack can I be an organ donor?
A: No, a person needs to be in a hospital and on a ventilator at the time of death to be considered for organ donation.
Q: Are there any costs involved to the family in organ donation?
No, all costs of organ donation are covered by BC Transplant.
Q: Can I register my children on the Organ Donor Registry?
Yes, you can register your children online, or you can request a registration
form. You will need to sign the Registration on their behalf, if under
the age of 19.
Q: Can I donate my organs if I have a medical condition?
A: Yes, everyone should register their decision regardless of any medical conditions. A medical team does a thorough examination of every potential donor to determine what organs can be used for transplant.
Q: When I sign up on the Organ Donor Registry, does that include donating Bone Marrow?
A: No. If you would like to donate bone marrow, you must contact Canadian Blood Services at www.blood.ca or (604) 737-1811 or toll free at 1-888-737-1811.
Q: I can't donate blood in Canada, can I still be an organ donor?
A: Yes. A medical team does a thorough examination of every potential donor to determine what organs can be used for transplant. Every British Columbian can register on the Organ Donor Registry. Please contact BC Transplant if you have any questions.
Q: What organs/tissues can be donated?
A: The heart, liver, lungs, pancreas, kidneys, heart valves, cornea, tissues, bones, skin, tendons and ligaments can be donated. Click here to learn more about how these organs and tissues are used for transplant.
Q: Are donor families informed of which organs and tissues were transplanted, and to whom they were given?
A: BC Transplant sends a letter to the donor's family stating which solid organs were transplanted. Often recipients will write letters of thanks to the donor families. Names are kept confidential and are not given to the donor or recipient families.
Q: If I consent to transplant research, what does that mean?
Consenting to transplant research allows blood and tissue samples to be
taken at the time of organ recovery, to be used for transplant specific
Q: What is living organ donation?
An individual can potentially donate one of their kidneys, or portion
of liver, to someone they know, such as a family member, spouse, friend,
or co-worker. In the case of kidney donation, someone could even donate
to someone they don't know through BC's Living Anonymous Donor program.
Living donors can lead healthy lives. Click
here for more information on living organ donation.
Q: If a donor is outside the Lower Mainland, where are the organs recovered?
A: A surgical team will fly to the hospital where the donor is located. The organs are recovered and brought back to Vancouver where the waiting recipient is transplanted.
Q: How long does the organ donation process take?
A: Once consent is given, it can take from 24 to 48 hours before the organ recovery surgery starts.
Q: Does BC Transplant pay for funeral arrangements?
A: No. The family is responsible for all funeral arrangements.
Q: Can a donor still have an open casket funeral?
A: Yes. Organs are always carefully removed and incisions closed by a surgical team. The body is at all times treated with the utmost respect.
Q: Are there religious objections to organ donations?
A: Most religions support organ/tissue donation as a humanitarian act. You are encouraged to discuss this with the religious leader(s) in your community or visit www.organtransplants.org/understanding/religion.
Q: How many people are on the transplant wait-list in British Columbia?
A: Currently, there are over 400 British Columbians waiting for a solid organ transplant. Thousands more are currently on kidney dialysis and most will one day be on the waiting list for a kidney transplant.
Why are there so few donors in BC?
information, please contact BC Transplant at BCTS_Webmaster@bcts.hnet.bc.ca