Central New York

Executive Order Makes it Easier for New York Residents to Become Organ Donors

Liver recipient Bob Brahaney shares his story of receiving an organ.

Lileana Pearson SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order this week which makes it easier for New York residents to register to be organ and tissue donors.

Before the order was put in place, residents could only sign up at the DMV.

“The problem was that people only go to the DMV every eight years maybe,” said Nancy Ryan, director of marketing and community relations at the Finger Lakes Organ Recovery Network.

New York is below the national average of eligible adults being on the organ-donor list with only 29 percent registered. By allowing residents to sign up online, it gives access to more people.

The executive order also made Lauren’s Law permanent. Lauren’s Law was created to bolster New York’s low organ donation registry. The law makes it mandatory to check “yes” or “skip this question” on the driver’s license application when it asked if the person wanted to be an organ donor.

Lauren’s Law was created in October 2012 and that year, it made a significant increase in the percentage of people who were on the organ and tissue donor registry.

Currently 10,000 New Yorkers are in need of organs, with kidneys being the most in demand. New York residents can register or update their information at donatelife.ny.gov .