Apple CEO Steve Jobs and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger announced new organ donation legislation today at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital. According to the San Jose Mercury News, the bill, which is sponsored by state Sen. Elaine Alquist (D-San Jose), would:
. . . [require] Californians who are applying for or renewing their drivers license to affirmatively accept or decline becoming a donor. The current system takes a more passive approach, merely providing a pink sticker to affix to a license.
The bill would also create the nation's first "living donor registry," allowing altruistic people to sign up to offer one of their kidneys to a sick person.
The article quotes Jobs, who had a liver transplant in 2009, as saying:
"There were not enough livers in California to go around. I was advised by my Stanford doctors to enroll on a list at a Memphis hospital, because it was more favorable to get a liver there.
"I was fortunate," he said because he had the ability to fly cross country in the four-hour window needed to transplant a healthy organ. "Last year, 400 other Californians died waiting. I could have died."
Photo by Robert Dicks