JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- There are about 120,000 people waiting for organ transplants across the United States, 5,700 of them in Florida. While 95% of people agree with organ donation, around 54% of people are actually registered. That number is a little higher in St. Johns, Nassau, and Clay counties. There are some common myths and misconceptions about organ donation.
One is that you won't be able to have an open casket. Organ donors are able to have an open casket if they choose. There's also the misconception that someone's religion doesn't support organ donation. According to Donate Life, all major religions either fully endorse donation as an act of human benevolence in keeping with religious doctrine, or leave the decision up to the individual. If you have any questions, talk to your religious leader.
There's also the myth that donation will be costly to the family. Donate Life says costs related to organ, eye, and tissue donation will be covered by the donor programs. You will not be financially responsible for any aspect of the donation process.
Perhaps the biggest myth of them all, is that doctors won't save your life because they want your organs.
"That is so patently and completely not true. Doctors and nurses are dedicated to saving your life not taking it. When you come in for hospital care, the hospital care team can't look up to see whether you're an organ donor if they wanted to. They don't have access to the registry," said Pamela Rittenhouse with Life Quest Organ Recovery Services.