Piedmont Macon to Host ‘Donate Life’ Ceremony April 12

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Wednesday, April 10th, 2024

April is Donate Life Month, and Piedmont Macon Medical Center is hosting a Donate Life flag-raising ceremony to promote organ donations in the midstate.

The event is scheduled for April 12 at noon near the main entrance of the hospital. The featured guest speaker is Candice Stephens, a double-organ transplant recipient who is also a member of the Kidney Health Coach Advisory Board for the American Kidney Fund. In 2022, Stephens started the Day After Foundation, which provides tools and resources for pre- and post-transplant patients.

“I am living proof of what organ donation looks like. It is a chance at a better life. It is hope. It is joy,” Stephens said. “My second chances were in the hands of my husband and a beautiful stranger, for whom I am eternally grateful.”

Nationally, more than 103,000 people are on the transplant waiting list, and another 33,000 receive a life-saving organ transplant each year, according to the LifeLink Foundation, which advocates for organ and tissue donations. Throughout April, people are encouraged to learn more about donation through programs offered by LifeLink and by registering through Georgia’s organ, eye and tissue donor registry.

Anyone can be a potential donor, regardless of age, or medical history according to LifeLink. A single donor can save up to eight lives with organ donations and make a difference in as many as 75 lives through tissue donation. Visit LifeLinkFoundation.org or call 800.544.6667 for additional information about organ and tissue donation.

Elizabeth Larkins, chief nursing officer at Piedmont Macon, is a champion for organ donation and encourages employees to register to become donors.

“One of the most important things anyone can do is to give the gift of life through organ donation,” she said. “Consider thinking about becoming an organ donor, signing up for the registry and talking with your family to let them know what you decide. Your decision now could make a life-saving difference for someone else.”

Piedmont is a leader in organ transplant surgery. When it comes to transplant surgery, patients need a proven, experienced leader they can count on to deliver unparalleled care and the best possible outcomes. Since 1986, Piedmont Transplant has been recognized as one of the nation’s most successful transplant programs, performing over 5,000 transplant surgeries for liver, pancreas, kidney and heart recipients.

Learn how you can save a life with Piedmont Transplant's Living Donor Program by visiting Piedmont.org/Transplant.