“Across the country, Canadians recognize this week as National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week.

“Right now, about 4,400 Canadians, many of them Albertans, are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant such as a heart, kidney or liver. Unfortunately, about 250 Canadians every year never receive the donation they need.

“Thousands more Canadians of all ages are waiting for tissue transplants. Tissue transplants can benefit those with serious or life-threatening conditions, including burns and cancer. A single tissue donor can save or improve the lives of up to 75 people.

“Sadly, people are six times more likely to need a transplant than to become a donor. I urge every Albertan to turn that fact around by registering their consent to become a donor on Alberta’s Organ and Tissue Donation Registry or in person at your local registry agent.

“It only takes a few minutes to register your consent to become an organ and/or tissue donor.

“Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services continue to find innovative ways to improve donation rates in the province so more lives can be saved and more families have the gift of time with their loved ones.

“Thank you to all the families in Alberta who, in their hour of grief, chose to help out other families by agreeing to their loved one becoming a donor.

“Thank you to all those Albertans who are living donors, providing a kidney, part of their lung or liver, tissue, bone marrow or stem cells, so that someone else’s life is improved.”