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Washington, D.C. -President George W. Bush declared April 2005 National Donate Life Month, and Federal Departments and Agencies are being encouraged to actively participate. The President's official proclamation can be found at www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/04/20050401-5.html
U.S. Office of Personnel Management Acting Director Dan Blair sent a memo to heads of Departments and Agencies (see attached memo) urging them to participate "by disseminating information, donor cards and links to websites." Information about organ and tissue donation and downloadable donor cards is available at http://www.organdonor.gov/signup1.html or by calling 1-800-355-SHARE (7427).
"The need is great, and there is much we can do collectively and individually to make a real difference in the lives of those around us," stated Blair. "The Federal workforce exceeds 1.8 million persons and provides tremendous potential for the Federal family to help fill this critical, immediate need."
According to statistics provided by the Department of Health and Human Services, there are more than 88,000 persons awaiting organ donations. Each day, approximately 75 people receive a transplant, while another 18 on the waiting list die because there are not enough organs available.
"As an agency, OPM is fully committed to this important initiative and will be offering its employee family the opportunity to become donors," added Blair. "This is an opportunity we will not let pass us by, and I trust agencies governmentwide will help shoulder this responsibility." Blair's memo can be found at http://www.chcoc.gov/transmittal_detail.cfm?id=601.
Government leave programs continue to support organ donation as does the Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) Program supports, for both patients and donors.
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