WATCH: Organ donation town hall hosted by Texas Organ Sharing Alliance and KSAT

Stephania Jimenez spoke with local experts about organ donation during National Donate Life Month

SAN ANTONIO – According to the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance, nearly 106,000 people are currently on the national waiting list for an organ.

Of those 106,000 people on the list, 2,000 are children and 10,000 people live in Texas.

To show the importance of organ donation and to answer any viewer questions, anchor Stephania Jimenez is hosting a town hall Wednesday, April 20 with the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance and members from University Health for National Donate Life Month.

You can watch the livestream at the top of this article.

The guests include:

  • Jennifer Milton, chief administrative officer for the University Health Transplant Institute
  • Dr. Gregory Abrahamian, dir. of kidney transplant for the University Health Transplant Institute
  • Micah Williams, RN, the clinical supervisor and clinical practice specialist for Texas Organ Sharing Alliance
  • Keri James, an organ donor who donated part of her liver to a 10-month-old child
  • Mike Dimas, a man who is currently in need of a kidney transplant

One of the most common organs needed for people who need a transplant is a kidney.

According to Donate Life America, 85% of patients waiting for an organ transplant need a kidney.

“What most people aren’t aware of is that one kidney is often more than enough,” said Williams. “Meaning, not only can you survive with one kidney if you were gifted one, but you can also survive with one kidney if you’re able to give one.”

An organ donated by a person who is still living is better for the recipient. According to the United Organ Sharing Network, living organ donations increase the existing organ supply.

The process of a live donation is safe, but like with any procedure, there are risks.

“I have not heard of a donor death in the United States in a number of years,” said Abrahamian. “So the risks are there -- the risks are extremely low.”

To learn more about organ donation or how to become an organ donor, visit TOSA1.org or call 1-866-685-0277.

You can also visit the University Health Transplant Institute or call 210-567-5777.

If you have questions about organ donation, fill out the prompt below.

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About the Authors:

Landon Lowe is a news producer for KSAT 12. He previously worked at the NBC/Fox affiliate in Baton Rouge, LA, where he was the senior news producer and political producer.

Stephania Jimenez is an anchor on The Nightbeat. She began her journalism career in 2006, after graduating from Syracuse University. She's anchored at NBC Philadelphia, KRIS in Corpus Christi, NBC Connecticut and KTSM in El Paso. Although born and raised in Brooklyn, Stephania considers Texas home. Stephania is bilingual! She speaks Spanish.