Race and Organ Donation
Gift of Life is committed to providing knowledge and resources to community members to make sure everyone is informed about correct organ and tissue donation information.
Join us throughout the month of August in celebrating National Minority Donor Awareness Month.
Learn more below on what you need to know about race and organ donation.
Closing the Donation Gap
Although organs are not matched according to race/ethnicity, and people of different races frequently match one another, all individuals waiting for an organ transplant will have a better chance of receiving one if there are large numbers of donors from their racial/ethnic background. This is because compatible blood types and tissue markers—critical qualities for donor/recipient matching—are more likely to be found among members of the same ethnicity. A greater diversity of donors may potentially increase access to transplantation for everyone.
Patients from communities of color make up more than half – 60% – of the national waiting list for a life-saving transplant.
Organ Donation among African Americans
- 28% of people currently on the national transplant waiting list are African American.
- In 2022, 17% of the organ donors in Gift of Life’s region were African American.
- In 2022, 22% of organ transplant recipients nationally were African American.
- African Americans are three to four times more likely to progress to end stage renal disease for chronic kidney disease than Caucasians.
Organ Donation among Asian/Pacific Islander population
- 9% of people waiting for life-saving organ transplants in the nation are Asian/Pacific Islander.
- In 2022, 2% of organ donors in Gift of Life’s region were Asian/Pacific Islander.
- In 2022, 7% of organ transplant recipients nationally were Asian/Pacific Islander.
Organ Donation among Hispanics
- 22% of people waiting for life-saving organ transplants in the nation are Hispanic/Latino.
- In 2022, 11% of the organ donors in Gift of Life’s region were Hispanic/Latino.
- In 2022, 19% of organ transplant recipients nationally were Hispanic/Latino.