What Do Dating Apps and Organ Donations Have in Common?
In the UK, the government has paired up with Tinder to increase signups
In the United Kingdom, the National Health Service has hooked up with the popular dating app Tinder to promote organ donations, according to the BBC.
On the online dating app, swiping right on someone’s profile means you’re interested. Now, if users swipe right on certain UK celebrity profiles on Tinder, they’ll get this message: “If only it was that easy for those in need of a life-saving organ to find a match.”
The NHS hopes to entice more young people into being organ donors, since more than 6,000 people in the UK have died while awaiting transplants over the last decade.
Meanwhile, in the United States, 18 people die each day waiting for a transplant, according to the National Foundation for Transplants (NFT).
Here are some easy ways you can help, according to the NFT, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and organdonor/gov.
- Visit the NFT at www.transplants.org to learn how to become an organ donor in your state.
- Select ‘Yes’ for organ donation when you apply for or renew your driver’s license.
the word by encouraging friends and family members to sign up.
Almost anyone can become an organ donor (kids under 18 may need parental permission), no matter their age. According to organdonor.gov, it’s the state of your organs that counts, not your age. Even if you’ve had a medical condition, such as cancer, your organs may still be able to save a life. Doctors will examine your organs to determine whether they can be used for a transplant.
People of all ethnicities are encouraged to become donors. According to organdonor.gov, the need for organs is higher in some racial groups than others. For instance, “African Americans, Asians and Pacific Islanders, and Hispanics/Latinos are three times more likely than Caucasians to suffer from end-stage renal (kidney) disease, often as the result of high blood pressure and other conditions that can damage the kidneys.” About one third of the people on the national waiting list for a kidney transplant are African American.
According to the website, everyone waiting for an organ will have a better chance of receiving one if there are plenty of donors from their racial/ethnic background. That’s because while people of different races frequently match one another, compatible blood types and tissue markers are more likely to be found among members of the same ethnicity.
Tinder has not yet partnered with federal health agencies in the United States to increase organ donation signups, but the app may have already saved at least one American life. A mother of two in Florida had been on a kidney transplant list for more than three years when a donor was found through Tinder, according to a story on ABC News. It turns out her husband’s best friend mentioned her plight to a woman he met on Tinder, and she was so moved that she volunteered to donate a kidney.