The tragic death of little Justin Lefebvre, who died by drowning last summer, today allows four people to live thanks to his heart, his kidneys and his liver. Ironically, shortly before this “stupid swimming accident”, the young man had shown his parents his desire to donate his organs to his death.
C ‘is what the parents told the young Sherbrooke on Wednesday at a press conference organized as part of the National Week of organ and tissue donation in order to raise awareness of the importance of such a gesture.
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A foundation in memory of Justin Lefebvre
Benoit Lefebvre and Marie-Pier Savaria testified that, despite the pain of losing a child, organ donation allowed them to “live better” the grief they unexpectedly faced.
“It’s a huge balm on our sorrow,” said Benoit Lefebvre. We are proud of our boy, we are proud to know that the four children under eight years old that he helped are doing very well. We had letters from two families of recipients. Even if we can not know who it is, just to know that they were able to relive thanks to Justin, for us, it’s perfect, “he said alongside his wife, who for his part qualified his boy as “hero”.
To give life
The former director of the Sherbrooke Police Service, Michel Carpentier, also testified about the importance of organ donation. The former policeman has lived for 15 years with the liver of a young man, who died at the age of 23 in a car accident. This gift, he said, allowed him to know his grandchildren and realize his dreams. “Had it not been for this gift, not only would I be gone, but my family would be in mourning,” he said, adding that organ donation can also have the effect of engendering life.
“I recently learned that a young woman, who received a kidney, was going to be able to have children. So, the young man who gave him his kidney not only allowed this young woman to live, but he also gave her the chance to give life … ”
“A donor who has hypertension may very well be compatible with a recipient who has the same condition. ”
– Annie Chouinard
Nurse Annie Chouinard has demystified the idea that only healthy people can consent to organ donation. It is the medical assessments, she said, that determine the condition of the organs and the compatibility of the organs with the receivers waiting.
“A donor who suffers from hypertension, for example, may very well be compatible with a recipient who has the same condition. Just as a person with cancer may also be able to give, she said.
Figures to improve
According to Transplant Quebec, the number of Quebecers waiting for organ transplants is currently 786. For each of these sick people, the chances of finding a compatible donor are relatively low. Hence the importance, says Transplant Quebec, of holding awareness campaigns such as National Organ and Tissue Donor Week, which is in full swing until April 28th.
According to the organization, anyone who donates organs has the power to save eight lives and restore the health of 20 people. In 2017 alone, 510 Quebecers benefited from a transplant, thanks to the donations of 182 deceased donors.
In Estrie, 13 deceased donors allowed 45 organ harvesting and 67 people authorized the donation of tissues.
Even if these statistics make Quebec the most successful province in Canada, the possibility of increasing the benefits of organ donation remains.
According to data available to Transplant Quebec, 9 out of 10 Quebecers say they are in favor of organ donation, but only 1 out of 2 Quebeckers told their family of their intention to donate organs. And that’s exactly where everything is played, say promoters of organ donation ….
Not only must you sign your health insurance card, says Transplant Québec, but you must inform your family of your choice. Because even if a person has given consent to organ donation, his family can oppose it on his death, says the organization.