Fort Worth, Texas (April 11, 2016) – Erika Costas, a 42-year-old Fort Worth mother and patient of the Fort Worth Transplant Institute at Medical City Fort Worth, was the featured speaker at a Donate Life Month event at Medical City Fort Worth of Fort Worth on April 11. A video with highlights of the event is included below.
Medical City Fort Worth and LifeGift hosted the Donate Life Month ceremony at Plaza, 900 Eighth Avenue in Fort Worth’s medical district, to encourage people to register as organ, eye and tissue donors.
Costas received a life-saving kidney transplant last year at Medical City Fort Worth from a deceased organ donor. Costas says she is forever thankful for the gift that allowed her to forego dialysis and enjoy a healthier life with her husband and 13-year-old daughter. An estimated 30,000 U.S. patients, like Costas, began new lives in 2015 thanks to organ transplants from both deceased and living donors. About 51 percent of U.S. adults are registered as organ, eye and/or tissue donors, according to data from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network.
The event also honored a special group of women who sew quilts to cover patients’ bodies at Medical City Fort Worth as they are transported to the operating room for organ donation. The quilts, which feature a “Give a Life, Save a Life” patch, are later presented to the donor’s family. The quilters are members of All Saints Lutheran Church in Arlington. They got the idea to make the quilts from a fellow church member who is a registered nurse at Medical City Fort Worth.
A Color Guard detail from NAS Fort Worth JRB led the raising of the American flag to begin the ceremony. A special flag commemorating organ donation month was flown all month at the hospital.
Texans can register online to be organ donors at www.donatelifetexas.org. More than 11,000 Texans are currently on the national transplant waiting list.