Difference between revisions of "Kevork Peltekian"

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Revision as of 13:07, 16 July 2012

Medicine: Tireless crusader for organ donation

The Telegraph-Journal (New Brunswick) Canada April 24, 2012 Tuesday


Tireless crusader for organ donation; Advocacy After receiving three organs, Saint John's Kevin Standing says he's simply happy to be alive. Now he wants to increase the odds for others

by Jennifer pritchett Telegraph-Journal


SAINT JOHN - Kevin Standing is alive because two people died.

Since 1995, the 48-year-old diabetic has received a kidney, pancreas and a liver in three organ transplants. And now, his replacement kidney is failing and he'll eventually need another transplant.

...

Kevork Peltekian, medical director for the Atlantic multi-organ transplant program liver team, stresses the importance of organ donation.

"The wait can take anywhere from a few months to a year ... there is a need for organ donation in Canada," he says. "People die on the wait list."

The Halifax-based liver disease specialist says the donor rate in Canada is less than 15 donors per million (population), while the rate for some European countries is much higher, including Spain, which has more than 40 donors per million. In Atlantic Canada, he said, it's between 15 and 20 donors per million.

"I think the best thing a person can do is not just sign their donation card, but they should make it clear to their family members and their loved ones what their wishes are," he says.

In Atlantic Canada, 264 people are on the transplant list or at various stages of work-up before listing. Of those, 142 are from Nova Scotia, 61 from New Brunswick, 16 from Prince Edward Island and 45 are from Newfoundland.

Peltekian says in order to increase the rates of organ donation, there needs to be more awareness and discussion about it. He says that having someone like Standing speak about it, is vital and key to getting the message out.

"Transplant quite literally runs in his blood," he says.

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