CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospital – Medical Center Honors Organ Donors and Recipients January 25, 2016

CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospital – Medical Center (CSRH – MC) and its doctors, nurses, leadership, and Associates are honoring the hundreds of thousands of donors and recipients whose lives have been forever affected by organ, eye, and tissue donations.

Today, CSRH – MC and the CHRISTUS Transplant Institute raised the Donate Life flag and proudly flies it to raise awareness for organ and tissue registration. A special blessing ceremony was also held to honor those affected by organ donation.

“We went from worry and shock to knowing that there was a solution,” said Vanessa Vargas. Her child, Isabella, was born with cysts on her kidneys and in renal failure. Isabella’s father, Joseph Lopez, was a match, and he donated his kidney to save his daughter’s life in a transplant procedure that occurred when “Izzie” was two years old. Izzie is now eight years old and thriving.

“Organ donation and registration saves so many lives. I encourage everyone to consider it, because you have the power to affect someone’s quality of life. The kidney transplant has been a Godsend for our daughter and has allowed us to watch her run, play, and dance like other normal little girls.”

“We are proud of the good work being done at our CHRISTUS Transplant Institute and proud to raise awareness throughout all our CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospitals for organ donation as we fly the Donate Life flag,” said Chris Bowe, FACHE, President and Administrator, CSRH – MC. “A single organ and tissue donor can save and heal the lives of more than 50 people.”

The Donate Life Texas organ donor registry started in 2006 and celebrated its eight-millionth registration in January 2016, making it among the fastest growing registries in the country.

The Texas Organ Sharing Alliance (TOSA) is one of 58 federally designated Organ Procurement Organizations (OPOs) in the United States. Founded in 1975 as a not-for-profit corporation, TOSA covers 56 counties in Central and South Texas.

“The continuing increase of registered donors demonstrates the foresight so many individuals in our community possess, which is to help others in need,” said TOSA CEO Patrick Giordano. “In 2015, 133 noble individuals and their families gave 419 patients a second chance at life.”

Individuals who are considering organ, eye, and tissue donation can do so through the website, www.DonateLifeTexas.org. The website also provides legal, first-person authorization for organs to be donated upon death, removing the burden of decision-making from the family during an already difficult time.