Sid Adams is passionate about organ donation.
He wouldn’t be around without one.
Adams, 71, is a former credit union CEO who dealt with polycystic kidney failure for years. On Nov. 1, 2017, he received a kidney transplant from a living donor, a friend from Nakusp, at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver.
“I’m five months post-surgery and the improvement to my health is far beyond my expectation,” said Adams, joined by wife, Bonnie, as he presented his story to Vernon council. “I can live out my life with quality. No amount of money could ever buy you that.”
Adams is a volunteer for the Kidney Foundation of Canada, BC and Yukon Branch, and gave council some encouraging numbers about what happens when you register as an organ donor.
Up to eight people may ulitmately benefit from the generous gift – Adams shared the story of Logan Boulet, 21, one of the 16 people killed on the Humboldt Broncos bus. He signed an organ donor card when he turned 21, and saved the lives of six people after his death.
Eighty per cent of all transplants are kidneys, but Adams said B.C. has one of the longest wait times in Canada.
“More than 3,500 people are on dialysis in B.C.; 50 per cent of them will die before they get a kidney transplant,” said Adams, who waited two-to-three years himself for a transplant.
“Ninety-five per cent of British Columbians say they support organ donation, yet only 24 per cent have registered on the official organ donor registry (http://www.transplant.bc.ca/our-services/organ-donor-registry/).
“If we could increase the donor registry to 50 per cent, we could all but eliminate the wait list. We can do this.”
Adams requested mayor and council consider passing a motion to help promote organ donor awareness and registration in the community during National Organ Donation and Tissue Donation Awareness Week April 22-29.
Council unanimously concurred (though Coun. Dalvir Nahal was absent from the meeting).
“I’m glad to see you’re doing well,” said Coun. Juliette Cunningham, who asked Adams if there was any age limit to becoming a donor.
“They need people of all ages,” said Adams. “It’s from young people to old people like me that are often in need. There is no expiry date. One donor was 91.”