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Outstanding Organ Donation Documentary

Posted on | January 29, 2010 | 2 Comments

This is by far the best television documentary series that I’ve seen in ages. It follows 14 different people from the 600 or so who are awaiting organ transplants in Ireland. In the first episode a lady awaiting and eventually receiving a heart transplant, a spouse to spouse kidney transplant, a young man awaiting his second kidney transplant for over 3 and a half year and a young girl from Enniscorthy who undergoes a liver transplant were shown.

The second episode concerned, for the most part, cystic fibrosis patients. It is Ireland’s most common life-threatening inherited disease. I was unaware that many cf patients may need a liver transplant as well as lungs transplant. This episode detailed Luke’s liver transplant in Dublin, Orla’s efforts to get on to the Newcastle lung transplant waiting list, the effect of cystic fibrosis on 6 year old Hannah’s day to day life andĀ  Jacinta from Knock suffering from pulmonary fibrosis, awaiting and eventually receiving a single lung transplant in the Mater hospital.

I am humbled by the courage, resilence and hope of these admirable people and their families. To know that their health has to deteriorate to such an extent before they’ll even be accepted on to the organ donation waiting list and to be aware of the numbers that pass away whilst on these lists. For many there are years of waiting, helpless, their lives put on hold as they wait for the misfortune of some other person and some otherĀ  family to enable them to receive a new lease on life.

I doubt whether I would be as strong. This programme makes me acutely aware of how very fortunate I am that my family is healthy and of how important it is to carry an organ donation card and to make your next of kin aware of your organ donation wishes.

If you missed the first couple of episodes you can catch up on the TV3 website. Congrats to TV3 for making such a gripping, must-see, excellent and ultimately life affirming series. Less imported crappy reality tv and more of this type high standard documentaries please.

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2 Responses to “Outstanding Organ Donation Documentary”

  1. Donncha O Caoimh
    February 20th, 2010 @ 8:47 am

    I wish I had seen that. Some of my mother’s organs were donated when she died in 1998.

    I’ll check out the TV3 website later, on the off chance that some of the series is still there.

  2. Manic Mammy
    February 20th, 2010 @ 11:03 am

    Hey Donncha,
    I think the series can still be viewed on the tv3 website. The whole series was excellent.

    The last episode also dealt with the relationship between organ donor and recipient and how the “real heroes in the process were the donors and their famililies who had made the donation decision”. Its wonderful that your family were able to take such a decision in a time of grief.

    The Goggins from Spiddal whose son had tragedically died in a road traffic accident explained their courageous decision to donate his organs and of how they think often on the 4 people who received his organs which comforts and consoles them in their grief for their son to a certain extent.

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