KODA Response to Article in The Washington Post 12/20/18

Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates, Kentucky’s largest organ procurement organization (OPO), serves this community with a core purpose to honor the gift of donation.  We provide education, coordinate organ, and tissue recoveries, and support families to maximize every opportunity for the gift of life.  Everyone at KODA is dedicated to respecting the referral process and having the dialogues that find the pathway to donation. Occasionally we are presented with challenges that may prevent donation from occurring, and our teams are committed to finding ways to allow that gift to be realized.  Our Leadership Team has taken an in‐depth analysis of past and current procedures to ensure the priority is the maximization of organ and tissue donations. “KODA has surpassed all expected performance criteria based on the validated, federally accepted metrics in prior years and is on track for a record number of donations and transplanted organs again in 2019. However, this exceptional performance is not demonstrated in the metrics put forth in the recent article by The Washington Post.  These journalists have manipulated the data set surrounding hospital deaths to imply a significantly larger pool of potential donors than truly exists. Specifically, they have not taken into account the health, religious, and cultural differences that impact authorization and suitability for donation across the various regions of the United States, and especially in the southeast,” says Julie Bergin, BSN, MHA, FACHE, President & CEO of Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates. For over three decades, federal and professional association bodies have researched and developed metrics that have scientific integrity, are meaningful, understandable and risk-adjusted.  KODA has supported these efforts and will continue to work closely with these agencies to ensure we are accurately assessing an opportunity to improve our performance.  We continue to surpass these established standards and receive consistent recertification and accreditation.  Through a process of continuous quality improvement, KODA and all OPOs strive to find avenues to increase the number of donations and transplants, ultimately saving more lives. KODA is proud of two groundbreaking years in a row: 2018 marked our most significant number of lifesaving organs transplanted in our history, 406 organs to date. Donation after cardiac death increased by 380%.  25% of our organ donors were older than age 50.  16% of our organ donors tested positive for Hepatitis C or B.  In 2017, now the third most successful year in KODA’s history, we coordinated the transplantation of 361 organs. In 2018, so far, 358 heroic tissue donors have changed and healed lives. The second highest number in our history.  This is an increase from a groundbreaking year in 2017 of 330 tissue donors.  Each year, an estimated 30,000 recipients are healed through this gift. For the past three years, we have supported and continue to provide aftercare for over 1,500 families who said “yes” to saving and healing lives through transplantation & research. As an organization, we believe there is always an opportunity for process improvement and work to ensure staff is trained, educated and comfortable with all current practices.  [...]

By |2018-12-20T16:54:51+00:00December 20th, 2018|KODA Blog, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Save the Date for the Legacy of Life 5k

Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust For Life &  Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates (KODA) Legacy of  Life 5K Run/Walk in Partnership with University  of Louisville Hospital Registration is Now Open for the 9thAnnual Event on Saturday, September 15   WHAT:        The Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust for Life and Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates (KODA), in partnership with University of Louisville Hospital, will host its 9th Annual Legacy of Life Run/Walk in Iroquois Park this September. All proceeds from the event will go to the Circuit Clerk’s Trust For Life/KODA’s patient assistance fund, as well as U of L Hospital’s Donor Family support program. Participants may register now to attend the race or register to be a virtual participate at http://bit.ly/tflkoda5K18register. WHEN:        Saturday, September 15, 2018, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon WHERE:       Iroquois Park, 2120 Rundill Road, Louisville, KY 40214  MORE:          Participantscan run (the 5K will be timed) or walk, there’ll be prizes for Largest Team, Best Team Uniform, and Best Outfit, along with music and lots of fun-filled, pre-race activities. And in addition to the big event in Louisville, Trust for Life and KODA are working together with volunteers, clerks, hospitals and passionate individuals across the entire state throughout the summer to bring its Legacy of Life 5k to every single county in the Commonwealth. ### The mission of the Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust For Lifeis to inform, educate, and encourage Kentuckians to register as organ and tissue donors to save lives. For more information visit trustforlife.org.KODA’s mission is to provide organ and tissues to those in need and to maintain a profound respect for those who gave. For more information visit kyorgandonor.org. Media contact: Erin Jones, erin@inmodemarketing.com, 502.774.0767

By |2018-07-30T17:25:56+00:00July 30th, 2018|KODA Blog, KODA Events, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Donate Life 2018 ECHO Observance Highlights the Importance of Organ & Transplantation in Multicultural Communities

Donate Life’s Every Community Has Opportunity (ECHO) is a national observance that encourages social media and community storytelling centered around donation education in multicultural communities throughout the U.S. Donate Life America (DLA) and the Association for Multicultural Affairs in Transplantation (AMAT) created Donate Life ECHO to focus on the importance of donation and transplantation in multicultural communities. Multicultural communities nationwide are disproportionately in need of lifesaving organ transplants, especially kidneys. Currently 58% of the U.S. transplant waiting list is comprised of multicultural patients. ECHO highlights the importance of registering to be an organ/eye/tissue donor; honor donors and donor families; and celebrate what transplantation has made possible in multicultural communities. This year’s two-week observance is Sunday, July 8 through Saturday, July 21. Increasing educational efforts, outreach and registration opportunities are vital steps towards expanding the number of registered donors and lives saved in multicultural communities. This year, Donate Life ECHO storytelling and outreach will include: Boomerang #DonateLifeECHOChallenge -  DLA and AMAT are inviting the public to share a Boomerang video on Instagram about why donation is important to them and/or their community. Donate Life ECHO Challenge participants will tag @donatelifeamerica, use the hashtag #DonateLifeECHOChallenge and encourage everyone to register their decision to be a donor at RegisterMe.org. Walgreens Consumer Awareness Campaign- Throughout July, information about Donate Life ECHO will be featured on Walgreens health resource panels included with prescriptions filled at its retail and local specialty pharmacies nationwide. Donate Life Caregiving - This year, the Donate Life ECHO observance will center on the theme of Donate Life Caregiving. DLA and AMAT are paying homage to the caregivers within, and for, our communities. Caregivers are vital to the health and well being of patients, families and our societal fabric. “We created Donate Life ECHO to give a national voice to the experience of multicultural communities with donation and transplantation. The voices and experiences from these communities need to be heard,” says Maria Veve, President of the Association for Multicultural Affairs in Transplantation (AMAT). “This year join us to include Donate Life Caregiving in the Donate Life ECHO message. Caregivers lift us up, walk with us and catch us when we fall. We are grateful for the opportunity to recognize all they do to make LIFE possible in this year’s observance. ” Donate Life ECHO resources are available in English, Spanish and additional languages. Resources and more information about how to be a part of Donate Life ECHO are available at: DonateLife.net/ECHOand amat1.org/programs/ECHO. You can register your decision to be an organ, eye and tissue donor in the National Donate Life Registry at RegisterMe.orgor the Medical ID Tab of your iPhone Health App or in Spanish at DoneVida.org. NOTE: Data from Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) as of April 20, 2018.  ### About Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates: KODA’s mission is to provide organ and tissues to those in need and to maintain a profound respect for those who gave. For more information visit kyorgandonor.org. The mission of the Kentucky Circuit Court Clerks’ Trust For Lifeis to inform, educate, and encourage Kentuckians to register as organ and tissue donors to save [...]

By |2018-07-03T12:03:48+00:00June 25th, 2018|Introduction, KODA Blog, Uncategorized|0 Comments


My name is Courtney Thompson, I am 23 years old, and I am currently on the waiting list for a Double Lung Transplant. I have lived in Murray my whole life. I attended Calloway County High School and Murray State University to which I graduated with an Associate Degree in Business Administration. Living in a small town you would never think that there is someone from your small town who needs a transplant or who suffers from such a horrible disease. However, that is the story here.  Every day I strive to be an advocate for organ donation and an advocate for Cystic Fibrosis. Cystic Fibrosis is a progressive genetic lung disease. In order for me to beat Cystic Fibrosis I will need a lifesaving double lung transplant. I was listed for a transplant on December 29, 2016. In order for Cystic Fibrosis to be present the mother and father has to be carrier of the CF gene.  The child then has a 1 in 4 chance of getting both of the CF genes.  I am the only on in my family with Cystic Fibrosis. We have searched through our family history and haven’t found anyone else who has had it in the past. People often ask me if I have a sibling, and I do, I have an older sister.   They then proceed to ask if she has Cystic Fibrosis as well, I tell them no, but she is a carrier of the gene. People often wonder why I got Cystic Fibrosis and my sister didn’t, to that question I often tell them that I am the lucky one. I say that whole heartedly because I truly believe I am the lucky one. I feel Cystic Fibrosis has made me the person I am today, and without it I am not sure of the person I would be. My lungs are currently functioning at 27% and I am currently on 3 liters of oxygen, which is why I am now listed for a transplant.  Life with Cystic Fibrosis hasn’t always been easy but it has been the best journey I have ever been on. Every day comes with challenges but I am always ready to tackle them because of God and the people who stand with me and who stand behind me. I have a wonderful family who loves me and who is always by my side for anything that comes my way. I also have many friends who help care for me and encourage me to keep fighting the fight. If it weren’t for my support system Cystic Fibrosis would definitely defeat me, but because of them I refuse to back down. Also standing with me and behind me is my work family. I work at The Plaid Rabbit owned by Karen Cain. Karen has been one of my biggest supporters in my life.  She encourages me every day but also gives me normalcy when it comes to working. Right now I am only able to work two days [...]

By |2018-01-24T14:17:05+00:00January 24th, 2018|Calloway, Uncategorized|0 Comments