We went to NYU Langone Medical Center in NYC for a Patient Ambassador Visit with Chris Klug, Eric Barton and Lauren Shields to inspire patients pre and post-transplant. First, we met with patients who were coming back to the hospital for check-up’s post-transplant. We met with six patients and got to hear their stories. All of these patients had received a life-saving liver and/or kidney transplant. Chris Klug, Eric Barton, and Lauren Shields also exchanged their experiences with transplantation.
Every person we talked to mentioned how lucky they were to be alive and how they feel the need to drive, inspire, educate and the desire to do more for organ donation. It is really a beautiful thing to see how transplantation has touched so many lives across our country.
New York has one of the lowest percentages of people registered as donors across the United States with only 27% of the population registered. This number has increased greatly due to the hard work of Lauren Shields and the implementation of Lauren’s Law which has made the question do you want to be an organ donor mandatory to answer at the DMV. This has dramatically helped to increase the number of registered donors in New York. New York is the state with the 4th highest population in the country with 19,889,675 people according to a 2017 World Population Review Study.
After seeing patients post-transplant. We went over to meet with some patients who just received a transplant. We were met by the incredible Dr. Bruce E. Gelb and Dr. Margaret Frank-Bader. Both doctors were moved by our Patient Ambassador Program and were so touched to get to see three patients post-transplant and to see how amazing everyone was doing. Chris Klug, Eric Barton, and Lauren Shields went into the rooms with the patients and got to speak with everyone, giving them hope and inspiring them that life after transplant can be lived to the fullest.
We want to thank everyone for coming out and helping us inspire people, giving people hope for their second chance at life. Life is something that is so precious and sometimes we take it for granted and we do not realize how precious it is until it is in jeopardy.