Tissue collection praised

HSHS St. Nicholas Hospital’s 2017 efforts to provide families with donation options and information have been recognized by the American Tissue Services Foundation (ATSF) with the Tissue Donation Recognition Award. This is the hospital’s third ATSF award since 2010.

According to ATSF Education and Development Manager, Jeanette Potts, HSHS St. Nicholas Hospital achieved a 50 percent tissue donation rate in 2017. This means that tissue was recovered on 50 percent of the hospital’s eligible donors. Hospital staff received training in tissue donation practices during the year from ATSF and holds donation committee meetings at least four times a year.

Gifts of tissue—which includes bone, skin, heart valves, connective tissue and veins—are used in more than one million surgeries routinely performed each year in the United States. In 2017, HSHS St. Nicholas Hospital’s tissue donor program helped more than 500 recipients receive the gift of life thru tissue donation. On average, one tissue donor can help 75 to 100 people.

Many more people are eligible tissue donors than they are organ donors, Potts says. Organ donation usually takes place when brain death has occurred, and transplants must be performed within a short time afterward. Tissue can be recovered within 12 to 24 hours of death and preserved for later use.

“Through its dedication and focus on increasing donation, HSHS St. Nicholas Hospital has made a tremendous difference in the lives of others,” Potts says. “Donated tissue gifts save lives, as well as increase strength, mobility and independence for many, many patients.”

American Tissue Services Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to caring for families and helping them heal from the death of their loved ones. Accredited by the American Association of Tissue Banks, ATSF provides a compassionate and knowledgeable team of education, recovery and quality systems professionals.


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