Jobs and Schwarzeneggar Team Up for Organ Donation

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs, 55, had a life saving liver transplant last year. Yesterday, he made a surprise appearance to Stanford's Lucile Packard Children's Hospital to tell his transplantation story.

Mercury News reports Jobs having said, "I was almost one of the ones that died waiting for a liver in California last year.”

Jobs has joined Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in an effort to push new California legislation which would expand the number of California organ donors.

According to the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN), as of this morning there are 106,627 in the United States waiting to receive an organ transplantation. The number of people who need organ donation has continued to increase. There are now more than 21,000 California residents waiting for an organ donation.

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Last year Florida launched a new website, www.DonateLifeFlorida.org, to make it easier for Floridians to become organ donors. The new California legislation which is being sponsored by State Sen. Elaine Alquist, D-San Jose would require applicants for driver's licenses to answer whether they would be an organ and tissue donor before the Department of Motor Vehicles will issue their license. Those willing to donate would be added to a state registry.

Currently, the DMV issues a license regardless of whether the applicant answer that question. It is reported that of the 26 million drivers in California, only 6.3 million have signed to be organ and tissue donors.

The bill also creates a "California Living Donor Registry," which connects sick patients to altruistic strangers who are willing to donate a kidney.

Commending Jobs, the governor said "What I like about Steve is, because he is a wealthy man that helped him get the transplant. But he doesn't want that — that only wealthy people can get the transplant and have a plane waiting to take him anywhere he needs to go. He wants every human being, if you have no money at all or if you're the richest person in the world. Everyone ought to have the right to get a transplant immediately."

Related stories
Organ Donation, the Gift of Endless Possibilities
Organ Donation Easier in Florida
April is National Donate Life Month

Sources
MercuryNews.com
Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network
www.transplantliving.org
OrganTransplants.org

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