Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Facebook raises awareness of organ donation

Facebook and Zuckerberg's call to have people add their donor status to their Facebook Timeline is inspired, truly using technology and the social media as an enabler for societal change.

In the United States alone there are currently over 90,000 people waiting for a donor kidney. A cursory look at the U.S Department of health & Human Services provides a breakdown of organ waiting lists by organ type (see graphic).  The waiting list is not getting shorter.

Surveys show that as many as 90% of Americans support organ donation, but only about a third of the 200 million licensed drivers in the United States actually tick the box indicating consent to being an organ donor.

And just as an aside we recently heard, according to Xinhua News Agency, that a 17-year old teenager sold his kidney in order to purchase an Apple iPhone and iPad.

Zuckerberg put out the call earlier this week to encourage the social network's users -- more than 900 million -- to speak up if they are organ donors and display it on their personal pages. He said, "We think that people can really help spread awareness of organ donation and that they want to participate in this to their friends, and we think that can be a big part in helping to solve the crisis,"

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