How to Find a Living Liver Donor
The majority of the people who are waiting for a liver transplant never ask anyone to donate. These people may think that they don't have enough information about living donation, or they may feel too mentally and physically exhausted. Our tools, and the support of family and friends, will make it easier to communicate the need for a living liver donor.
The tools provided here will assist those who are seeking a living liver donor. People who are interested in learning more about being a living liver donor will likely want more information about the process. Give them any of our living liver donation materials, or point them to this website at uwhealth.org/livingdonor.
From the first step, to donation surgery, to follow up care, our living donation team will take excellent care of these generous people.
The Importance of Clear Communication
It's easy to assume that if people wanted to help they would just offer to donate. In fact, they may be waiting to be asked or might think someone else is already going to donate. Some people might want to do some reading about living liver donation and others may not even know that living liver donation is an option. It is important to clearly state that a living liver donor is needed.
Find Someone to Help
We encourage patients to quickly tell close family and friends that a living donor liver transplant is their best option. Some patients also have a living donor champion - a person or people who help get the message out further. We give them living donor education materials to increase their chances of finding a living donor.
Share the Story
Patients and living donor champions should let people know why a living donor transplant is needed.
- Explain why a liver transplant is needed and how liver disease is affecting the patient's life.
- State why living donation is the best option. Read our Introduction to Living Donation to learn important facts.
- Highlight that a living donor does not have to be related to the recipient or have the same blood type. Our Introduction to Living Liver Donation explains the ways anyone who is healthy enough to donate can donate.
There are many ways to share the story:
- Talk About It
- Say It in Writing
- Use Social Media
- Telephone friends/start a phone tree
- Make a video
- Post a flier
- Local newspaper story
- Radio ad
- Write a message on a car window or t-shirts, get creative!
Carry a supply of our wallet-sized cards as an easy way to share the information people need if they decide to learn more about living donation. We can provide the cards and other supplies if you are interested. Request materials