Updated at: 18-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Who can donate their organs? In this post, you will learn how to become an organ donor.

Take note that if the donor dies in the hospital under specific conditions, organ donation is only possible.

The decision to donate organs and tissues is made by a team of highly qualified healthcare professionals in each case. And that’s what we’re going to cover in this piece; we’re going to find out who can donate their organs. You’d be wise to read on for more information.

Who Can Become An Organ Donor?

An organ donor’s influence can extend far beyond the recipient. Donating organs and tissue after death has the potential to save or improve the lives of up to 75 people.

Having the knowledge that their loved ones made a difference in the lives of others can also help grieving families cope with the loss of a loved one. Donors from ethnic minorities should be given extra consideration.

Organ Donation Facts and Statistics | Donor Network West

They are more likely to be diagnosed with chronic disorders that affect the heart, kidneys, lungs, or liver. In addition, Asian and Pacific Islander people make up a larger percentage of minorities. Some blood types are more prevalent in ethnic minority populations. In addition, there is a strong demand for minority organ donors because transplant patients often require a blood type match. So, who can donate their organs? The following is a rundown of each:

Age limit

Is there an age limit for becoming an organ donor?

You can be an organ donor at any age.

Medical experts at the time of donation make the final decision on whether any or all of your organs or tissue are appropriate for transplantation, taking into account your medical, travel, and social background.

Can children join the NHS Organ Donor Register?

There is a registration option for parents and guardians and a registration option for children.

Children must have their guardian’s or parent’s permission to donate if they are under the age of 12 in Scotland or 18 in the rest of the UK at the time of registration.

Medical conditions

Can you become an organ donor if you have a medical condition?

No one is barred from donating organs or tissue just because they suffer from a medical ailment. Medical specialists evaluate your medical, travel, and social histories to make a decision regarding the suitability of your organs and tissue for transplantation.

Few conditions preclude the possibility of donating one’s organs.

In order to be an organ donor, a person must not have or be suspected of having any of the following:

  • Dementia with Lewy Bodies (CJD)
  • Disease caused by the Ebola Virus
  • Active cancer
  • HIV*

Occasionally, the organs of HIV-positive donors have been utilized to treat those with the same disease. Those who are living with HIV and want to donate their organs should sign up to do so, as a medical team will determine whether or not your organs can be used.


All potential blood donors are screened for diseases and viruses that can be transmitted, such as HIV and hepatitis. The potential donor’s family is made aware of the need for this surgery.

Can you become an organ donor if you have had cancer?

A cancer patient is ineligible to be an organ donor. Cancer patients may be able to donate after three years of treatment if they have certain types of cancer that can be treated after that time frame. In certain situations, corneas and other tissues may be donated.

Lifestyle choices

Can you become an organ donor if you smoke?

If you smoke, you can still be an organ donor. Organ donation has saved the lives of smokers and people with other health conditions, and these people’s organs and tissue are still being used to this day thanks to the expertise of trained medical professionals.

Can you become an organ donor if you have a tattoo?

The fact that you have a tattoo on your body does not preclude you from donating your organs.

Can you become an organ donor if you drink alcohol?

Donating organs while intoxicated is not a problem. Experts in the field of organ and tissue donation will determine which of your organs and tissues are suitable for donation on an individual basis, even if you’ve been drinking a lot.


Does race, or ethnicity matter in organ donation?

Donors of various backgrounds are needed.

Organs from donors of the same ethnicity as the recipient are more likely to be a close match for a transplant to be successful.

Learn more about the significance of racial or ethnic origin in organ donation.

Here's how organ donation works in Canada - National | Globalnews.ca

Non-blood donors

Can you become an organ donor if you are unable to donate blood?

You can still be an organ donor even if you don’t or can’t donate blood.

If you haven’t been able to donate blood because you’ve had a blood transfusion (or blood products) since January 1, 1980, there are certain exceptions. You may have been unable to donate blood due to a medical condition at the time. You may not be able to donate blood if you have a cold or are taking medication.

At the moment of donation, a medical specialist evaluates the organs and tissue to determine whether or not they are eligible for transplantation. This evaluation takes into account your medical history.

In order to get a better idea of who can donate their organs, here are some often asked questions. Let’s get to the meat of the matter, shall we? Donating organs while smoking is not advised. Registering as an organ donor doesn’t matter if you smoke; you can still do so. Many smokers and people with other health issues have been saved thanks to organ donation. Health care experts who make these decisions will keep countless others like them in the same situation.

Will I still be eligible for organ donation if I have a tattoo or drink alcohol?

If you have a tattoo, you can still donate your organs to others. If you’re a heavy drinker, there is no way to avoid being an organ donor, even if excessive alcohol use may limit your capacity to donate some organs. Depending on an individual’s specific needs, medical professionals will select which organs and tissues are eligible for donation.

Is it possible to donate an organ after having cancer?

A person with active cancer cannot donate an organ. On the other hand, patients with some types of cancer may be allowed to donate after three years of treatment. You may also be able to donate corneas and other tissues under certain circumstances. You can still donate organs even if you aren’t able to give blood. It’s possible that you could be an organ donor if you can’t give blood. Read this article on presumed consent organ donation if you’re ever eligible for blood donation. It’s likely that some people may be unable to donate blood because they’ve had a transfusion or received blood products since January 1, 1980.

Do my blood and tissue type have to match the recipient’s?

If the donor and receiver are a good match, it is easier to transplant an organ. In order to evaluate whether your blood and tissue types are compatible with the recipient’s, the transplant team will administer a battery of tests to you.

Even if the blood and tissue types of the donor and recipient do not match, certain medical institutes are able to transplant an organ. A particular treatment will be given to avoid the donated organ from being rejected by the receiver.

How can I become an organ donor?

Filling out an organ donor card at the time of obtaining or renewing your driver’s license is another option for donating your organs after death.

Your family or friends’ transplant team or a local transplant center can help you become a living donor, but you can also find out who needs an organ by contacting them directly.

If I donate an organ, will I have health problems in the future?

The answer is no. Some organs can be donated in full or in part without affecting your health in the long run. It is possible to donate a full kidney, or a portion of the pancreas; the intestine; the liver; or the lung. Your body will adjust for the missing organ or part of an organ that you are missing. A small number of studies have shown that kidney donors have a slightly increased risk of developing hypertension, preeclampsia, and chronic kidney disease in the long run. However, the available evidence is sparse and inconsistent. An organ donation would be out of the question for someone who is at risk of harming themselves by donating, whether that harm is immediate or long-term.

Will I be paid for donating an organ?

No. Paying someone for an organ is against the law. When donating a living organ, the recipient’s insurance, the transplant program, or the recipient should cover your medical fees. Additional medical services may be covered under the transplant program. It’s possible that some or all of your travel expenses will be paid for.

Will organ donation after death mean I can’t have an open-casket funeral?

No, the incisions made to harvest organs will be stitched up.

Will my organ donation after death incur any costs to my family?

Donation-related examinations and surgeries are not covered by insurance; instead, they are paid for by the receiver. Your family will pay for your medical care and funeral expenses.

Does signing a donor card have an impact on the quality of medical care I get at a hospital?

No, not unless your life is in danger.

The medical team that is taking care of you is not part of the transplant team. This is an important distinction. Before considering organ donation, every effort will be done to preserve your life.

Pros and Cons of Organ Donation

Consider these advantages and disadvantages before deciding to be a living organ donor:

Pros. Knowing that you’ve saved someone’s life is one of the best benefits of organ donation. Whether it’s a family member or a complete stranger, you’ll never know what kind of person you’ll encounter.

Cons: Donating organs necessitates extensive surgery. The hazards of any surgery include the potential for blood loss, infection and blood clots, as well as the potential for injury to neighboring tissues and organs.

7 Myths About Organ Donation | Cedars-Sinai

A living donor may still experience pain after the surgery, even though anaesthetic will be administered. Each procedure has its own unique level of discomfort and pain. In addition, surgery might leave noticeable scars that last a lifetime.

Your body will need time to heal from surgery. You may have to take time off from work until you are completely recovered.

Should You Become an Organ Donor? Making the Decision

As you assess the benefits and hazards of becoming a living organ donor, do it carefully.

Before making a decision, gather as much information as possible. The transplant facility should walk you through the entire process of donating your organs. An independent donor advocate should also be assigned to you, who will help you understand your medical rights.

Keep a running list of questions in your head as you go through the interview process. There are a number of things you need to know before deciding whether or not to donate your organs.

As a last point, keep in mind that this is entirely up to you. Don’t allow anyone to change your opinion on the matter. A friend or loved one may be in critical condition, but you still have to think about how donating an organ may effect your own life. Keep in mind that even after you start the contribution process, you have the option to terminate it at any time if your mind changes about donating to a certain cause.

It’s A Wrap!

Who can donate their organs? Everyone can donate their organs regardless of their physical condition or ethnicity, provided that the organs can be successfully transplanted by medical specialists. Regardless, here’s a link to an article about the importance of blood donation: