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Maryland among leaders in organ donation

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Maryland -- According to a new report, Maryland is among the leaders in the world when it comes to the rate of organ donation.

Maryland donation rates rank an impressive 14th out of the study’s 90 national and international donation regions. The District of Columbia finishes an impressive 5th.

According to the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, U.S. states lead the world, making up 43 out of the top 50 international jurisdictions. Interestingly enough, the U.S. has an opt-in system. Organs are not donated unless a donor has specified it or their family chooses the option.

In other jurisdictions, there is an opt-out policy where everyone is considered a donor unless they formally specify otherwise. Regions with an opt-out policy have a 27% lower donation rate than opt-in regions like the United States.

Spain as the only Opt-Out country ranked among the highest performing U.S. states.

“In the U.S., we allow individuals to make a legally binding decision to register to be an organ, eye and tissue donor and we encourage them to share their decision with their loved ones,” said Lori Brigham, President and Chief Executive Officer, Washington Regional Transplant Community. “Opt-In donation also allows families to choose organ donation if their loved one has not made a prior decision. This approach has proven to be effective in helping to save more lives through donation.”

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