Clarissa Prof. Blake
Aponte, Clarissa November 14, 2010
Speech L3, Group A [email protected]
Persuasive Speech Working Outline
Topic: Organ donation
Thesis Statement: Becoming an organ donor after death is not only an important decision for yourself, but it is also an important decision for the life that you may have the power to save.
Type of Speech: Value
Listener Needs: Safety and Social
Strategy for Presenting Content: Refutation
Specific Purpose: To persuade my audience to consider becoming organ donors after death
Introduction: Almost everyone would want to be able to say “I have saved a life.” But by becoming an organ donor, you can be able to say “I will save a life.” Organ donation is a selfless way to give back to others, and to be able to make a huge difference by giving another person a second chance at life. Unfortunately, the number of patients waiting for organs far exceeds the number of people who have registered to become organ donors. Patients are forced to wait months, even years for a match, and far too many die before they are provided with a suitable organ. There are many stigmas related to organ donation, but most of them are relatively false, and in order to be well informed, you must know what organ donation is, how it works as well as how you can become an organ donor and what organs or tissues you can donate. Becoming an organ donor after death is not only an important decision for yourself, but it is also an important decision for the life that you may have the power to save.
- Main Point 1- What organ donation is and how it works
- Organ donation takes healthy organs and tissues from one person for transplantation into another. Organs you can donate include: kidneys, heart, liver, pancreas, intestines, lungs, skin, bone, bone marrow, and cornea (the front part of the eye). [source: medlineplus.com]
- Organ donations usually occur for patients with kidney failure, heart disease, lung disease, and cirrhosis of the liver. For patients who need a kidney or a liver, a living donor’s organs can be utilized, since we are already born with an extra kidney and the liver is regenerative. However, if the patient needs a heart, lung, pancreas or cornea, the organ needs to come from a deceased donor. [source: discoveryhealth.com]
- A transplant is usually the last course of action in the treatment of a patient, but if the patient is willing and able, it can be a good option. If the patient consents to an organ transplant, doctors put the patient’s name on a list by the United Network for Organ Sharing, or UNOS. [source: discoveryhealth.com]
- UNOS has a database with all transplant patients awaiting organs and information on all organ transplant centers around the country, and the board of directors, which is made up of transplant doctors, establishes policies that decide who will get which organs. [source: discoveryhealth.com]
- Acceptable donors are those who are brain dead but are still on life support. They are technically dead, but the body is still functioning, so the organs remain healthy. A match is made when both the donor and the recipient have the same blood and tissue type, and other medical factors are considered depending on the specific needs for each case. Also, how long a patient has been waiting for an organ is a big factor when choosing who will get which organ. [source: discoveryhealth.com]
- Main Point 2- Arguments against organ donation and refutations
- People of all ages and backgrounds can be organ donors, and if you are under 18, you must get permission from your parent before registering as an organ donor. [source: medlineplus.com]
- There are many myths about becoming an organ donor, but here are just a few [source: mayoclinic.com]:
- If I agree to donate my organs, the hospital won’t work as hard to save my life: When you go to hospitals for treatment, doctors focus on saving your life, not someone else’s, and the doctor in charge of your care has nothing to do with transplantation.
- Organ donation is against my religion: Organ donation is consistent with the beliefs of most religions, including Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam, and most branches of Judaism. If you are unsure of your faith’s position on the subject, you can go to organdonor.gov, which has a list of many religious views on organ donation.
- An open-casket funeral isn’t an option for organ donors: The donor’s body is fully clothed, so no one can see the markings or scars of surgery for organ donation. For bone donors, a rod is inserted where the bone was removed, and for skin donors, the skin donation is taken from the person’s back, and since the deceased is clothed and on their back in the casket, the scar is not visible.
- I’m too old to donate: There is no defined cutoff age for donating organs, and there have been many successful organ donations from donors in their 70’s and 80’s. The decision to use the organs is based on medical criteria, and not necessarily age.
- Maybe I won’t really be dead when they sign the death certificate: People who are organ donors are actually given more tests to determine that the patient is truly dead than they would give to those who are not organ donors.
- Main Point 3- How to become an organ donor and the benefits of organ donation [source: organdonor.gov]
- Register with your state donor registry by going to organdonor.gov and registering online according to what state you reside in. All you have to do is enter in some basic information, such as your name, address, height, gender, and race, and also what specific organs you are willing to donate after your death.
- Designate your decision on your driver’s license, as well as when you renew it.
- Sign a donor card and carry the card with you until you can designate your decision on your driver’s license.
- Talk to your family about your donation decision and help them to understand your wish.
- Some benefits that come along with organ donation is the satisfaction of being able to save lives even when you are already gone, and some families feel that knowing their loved one has helped save a life in turn helps them in coping with their loss.
Conclusion: Before doing the research for this speech, I had never really considered or even thought about the potential of me becoming an organ donor. However, now that I am more informed on the subject, it seems like a no brainer to just register to donate my organs. If you really think about it, are you going to be using your organs in your grave when you die? The answer is (obviously) no, so why not help and save someone else by giving them something that you are no longer in need of? So many patients who are in need of a new organ just want a second chance at life, and it is so easy to help them. It amazes me that, as of this November 26, 2010, there are 9,729 registered organ donors and, as of yesterday, 109,966 are waiting list candidates for organ transplants. Please help change these numbers by registering to become organ donors, and together, we can all be satisfied knowing that we will, in the future, save someone’s life. Thank you.