Establish an Internal Organ Procurement Program
o Adopt the best practices and procedures related to organ procurement and donation.
o Designate a donor specialist or advocate at the hospital charged with all donor activities.
o Form a small group of individuals composed of nurses, social workers, and pastoral workers to assist the donor advocate in disseminating information and working with families.
o Plan outreach activities that include discussions with community groups.
o Recognize that organ procurement and transplantation are not everyday occurrences but are special events.
o Fully assess your internal donation system: strengths, weaknesses, levels of participation, accountability, communication, and quality of information known and disseminated.
o Communicate regularly with local legislators, organ procurement organizations, and other hospitals regarding donor opportunities and support favorable legislation.
o Work with the hospital’s counsel on the legal aspects of donor procurement.
o Get the full support of management and the local community through information.
Editor’s note: The Partnership for Organ Donation and other groups can offer advice on nationally accepted best practices and procedures. (See box, at right, for contact information.)