The Secretary of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C., 20201; Letter published September 14, 2020
Dear Department of Motor Vehicles Staff:
l would like to thank you for your continuing efforts and dedication to closing the widening gap between the demand for organ transplants and the supply of donated organs. As a valued partner, you are the first critical step in our collective effort to ensure all Americans are aware of their potential to save and improve the lives of the thousands of men, women, and children waiting for a life-saving or life-enhancing transplant by registering as organ, eye, and tissue donors.
I applaud Donate Life America (DLA) for designating September as National Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Appreciation Month to recognize your efforts and to thank you for your commitment to saving and improving lives. You play a pivotal role in our nation’s extraordinary record of growth in organ donation and transplantation. During this important observance, I want to make sure that you are recognized for two reasons:
- Because you make a difference every day. When you ask the donor registration question to customers, you are helping people remember to register their decision to be organ, eye, and tissue donors. DMVs remain the primary source of state donor registrations, which now exceed 150
- Because your work enables more life-saving transplantations every year. In 2019, health care teams across the country performed nearly 40,000 transplants with organs from both deceased and living organ donors. This marks an 7 percent increase over 2018, which was a seventh consecutive annual record.
The Department of Health and Human Services serves the needs of more than 112,000 men, women, and children who are waiting for a transplant. You are vital partners in our effort. On behalf of the Division of Transplantation in the Health Resources and Services Administration, I join with DLA and the donation and transplantation community in thanking you for the work you do each day to help save and enhance lives.
Alex M. Azar II