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Myra Rubenstein Weis Health Resource Center

The Myra Rubenstein Weis Health Resource Center is dedicated to supporting the health education needs of the community. An annual benefit funds the Resource Center as well as the Living in the Future (LIFE) Cancer Survivorship Program, including sponsorship of the Myra Rubenstein Weis Cancer Survivorship Seminars.

Located at Highland Park Hospital, the Resource Center is a private place to obtain information when making healthcare decisions.

Visitors are welcome to stop by to browse our collection and enjoy our relaxing environment between appointments or during other idle time in the hospital.

Our personal, confidential assistance is available free of charge to help you find the health information you need. Our hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information or to request services, call the Resource Center Coordinator at 847.480.2727 or email mrwresource@northshore.org.


In the Spotlight:

                                                                               Donate Life!

  • April: National Donate Life Month


  • Organ procurement organizations, transplant centers, national donation organizations and other organizations sponsor special awareness events and donor recognition ceremonies to promote donation awareness and registration. National Donate Life Month was established in 2003. Every day in April, people across the U.S. make a special effort to celebrate the tremendous generosity of those who have saved lives by becoming organ, tissue, marrow, and blood donors and to encourage more Americans to follow their fine example.  One organ donor can save up to 8 lives; one eye and tissue donor can enhance the lives of as many as 50 people; more than 28,000 lives are saved every year by organ donors!

    22 people will die each day waiting for an organ

    121,385 people are waiting for an organ

    What Can Be Donated

    Organs

    The organs of the body   that can be transplanted at the current time are kidneys, heart, lungs,   liver, pancreas, and the intestines. Kidney/pancreas transplants, heart/lung   transplants, and other combined organ transplants also are performed. Organs   cannot be stored and must be used within hours of removing them from the   donor's body. Most donated organs are from people who have died, but a living   individual can donate a kidney, part of the pancreas, part of a lung, part of   the liver, or part of the intestine.

    Tissue

    Corneas, the middle ear, skin, heart valves,   bone, veins, cartilage, tendons, and ligaments can be stored in tissue banks   and used to restore sight, cover burns, repair hearts, replace veins, and   mend damaged connective tissue and cartilage in recipients.

    Stem Cells

    Healthy adults between the ages of 18-60 can   donate blood stem cells. In order for a blood stem cell transplant to be   successful, the patient and the blood stem cell donor must have a closely   matched tissue type or human leukocyte antigen (HLA). Since tissue types are   inherited, patients are more likely to find a matched donor within their own   racial and ethnic group. There are three sources of blood stem cells that   healthy volunteers can donate:

    Marrow-This soft tissue is found in the interior cavities of bones. It   is a major site of blood cell production and is removed to obtain stem cells.

    Peripheral blood stem cells-The same types of stem cells found in marrow   can be pushed out into a donor's bloodstream after the donor receives daily   injections of a medication called filgrastim. This medication increases the   number of stem cells circulating in the blood and provides a source of donor   stem cells that can be collected in a way that is similar to blood donation.

    Cord blood stem cells-The umbilical cord that connected a newborn   to the mother during pregnancy contains blood that has been shown to contain   high levels of blood stem cells. Cord blood can be collected and stored in   large freezers for a long period of time and, therefore, offers another   source of stem cells available for transplanting into patients.

    Blood and Platelets

    Blood and platelets are formed by the body, go   through a life cycle, and are continuously replaced throughout life. This   means that you can donate blood and platelets more than once. It is safe to   donate blood every 56 days and platelets every four weeks.

    Blood is stored in a   blood bank according to type (A, B, AB, or O) and Rh factor (positive or   negative). Blood can be used whole, or separated into packed red cells,   plasma, and platelets, all of which have different lifesaving uses. It takes   only about 10 minutes to collect a unit (one pint) of blood, although the testing   and screening process means that you will be at the donation center close to   an hour.

    Platelets are tiny   cell fragments that circulate throughout the blood and aid in blood clotting.   Platelets can be donated without donating blood. When a specific patient   needs platelets, but does not need blood, a matching donor is found and   platelets are separated from the rest of the blood which is returned to the donor. The donor's body will replace   the missing platelets within a few hours.

     

     

     

    Organ Procurement Organizations

    There are 58 organ procurement organizations (OPOs) in the United States. OPOs are responsible for two main functions within their designated service area: 1) increasing the number of registered donors, and 2) coordinating the donation process when actual donors become available.

    To increase donor sign-up, OPOs may implement any number of community outreach activities such as sponsoring advertising campaigns, programs in schools, worksites, or faith institutions, disseminating print and electronic materials, etc.

    When actual donors become available, OPOs evaluate the potential donors, check the deceased’s state donor registry, discuss donation with family members, contact the OPTN and run a match list, and arrange for the recovery and transport of donated organs. They also provide bereavement support for donor families and volunteer opportunities for interested individuals.

    OPOs employ a variety of staff including procurement coordinators, requestors, specialists in public relations, communication, and health education, as well as administrative personnel.

    OPOs must be certified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and abide by CMS regulations. By federal law, all OPOs must be members of the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN). All OPOs are members of the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations                         .

 

For more information or to learn more about a variety of different health topics, please browse our health encyclopedia.