Statement from the Minister of Health and Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health – National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week (April 21-27)


April 26, 2024 | Ottawa, ON | Health Canada

This week is National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week. There is a critical need for more donors across the country. Every year, many Canadians receive life-saving organ transplants; however thousands still wait. Lives are at stake.

As of 2022, over 3,777 Canadians are still waiting for life-saving organ transplants and many more are waiting for tissue transplants. Despite significant progress, there remains an urgent need for more donors in Canada, as our country is still unable to meet the needs of all patients waiting for an organ or tissue donation.

The Government of Canada is working together with provinces and territories, Canadian Blood Services (CBS), patients, families, clinicians, and researchers to improve the organ donation and transplantation (ODT) system. This includes supporting CBS with an annual investment of $3.58 million to enhance public and professional engagement on organ and tissue donation and transplantation. CBS aims to reach new and underrepresented audiences by developing new resources under the Leave Well 2024 platform and is also developing resources for children, youth, students, and teachers, while leveraging partnerships with programs like the Orgamites.

Health Canada's investments extend to the Organ Donation and Transplantation (ODT) Collaborative to address key issues and barriers in the field. We support projects such as the Pan-Canadian ODT Data and Performance Reporting System, as well as initiatives like the Living Donor Kidney Transplantation – System Gap Analysis and High Performing Models project. These efforts aim to enhance living donation kidney transplantation programs across provinces and territories to improve patient care and outcomes.

Most recently, on April 12, 2024, the Federal/Provincial/Territorial (FPT) Conference of Deputy Ministers of Health endorsed the creation of a Pan-Canadian Governance Framework for Organ Donation & Transplantation. This will provide the ODT sector with an organized governance structure made up of the federal government, provinces and territories, stakeholders, and patients working together to improve organ and tissue donation services across the country.

We know that organ donation is a deeply personal decision. If you want to donate your organs, it is important to discuss this decision with your family and loved ones to ensure your wishes are known.

This week, we encourage you to think about making the choice to become an organ and tissue donor and make a difference in the life of someone in need. When you give an organ, you can save a life. Register as an organ donor today.

The Honourable Mark Holland, P.C., M.P.

The Honourable Ya'ara Saks, P.C., M.P.


Christopher Aoun
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Mark Holland
Minister of Health

Yuval Daniel
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ya'ara Saks
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Media Relations
Health Canada

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