More Minorities needed to Donate Organs

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More than 57,000 minorities are waiting for kidney transplants. As people die waiting, the need for more minorities to donate continues to grow.

During National Minority Donor Awareness week, donor specialists hope you will sign up to give someone a refreshed chance at life.

Sitha Hun, the Assistant Program Manager for the secretary of State said,  "Vikki Tulcus, she actually passed away waiting for a kidney. She um just waited by the phone, just waiting for a kidney to come through and nothing ever happened."

Brett Kesselring, a donation specialist said, "on the national waiting list there's over 118,000 people currently waiting for life saving organ transplants. Here in Illinois we're just over 5,000 and a majority of those people are waiting for kidneys."

Kesselring and Hun work with people on Illinois' organ donation registry. While hundreds of people donate, they said, many minorities are not participating in the cause.

"Fifty-six percent of people on the national waiting list are of minority descent," added Hun.

Not that other cultures can't donate to each other, but "it's more of a success rate of minorities donating to other minorities so that's why it's extremely important," Hun said.

Don't let myths stop you or stories from popular movies like "John Q." Think about organ donation now and make a decision.

If you would like to register to be an organ donor, you can go to the Gift of Hope website.

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