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What happens to my donated organs and tissue?

Patients receive organs and tissues based upon blood type, length of time on the waiting list, severity of illness, and other medical criteria.
  • A national allocation system ensures the fair distribution of organs in the United States. Social and financial data are not part of the allocation system. 
  • People eligible to receive organs are identified based upon many factors including blood and tissue typing, medical urgency (severity of illness), time on waiting list, other medical criteria, and geographical location. 
  • Race, gender, age, ethnicity, income, or celebrity status are not factors in determining who receives an organ or tissue transplant. Additionally, the law strictly prohibits buying and selling of organs for transplantation. 
  • Donated organs, eyes and tissues are given to people who need them the most. Typically, at the local level, then the regional level, and finally all over the country. Under certain circumstances organs, eyes and tissues may be sent out of the country to help patients in need. 
  • Buying and selling organs is against the law!

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