Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network announces a second consecutive year of record levels of life-giving donation in Illinois and northwest Indiana.

Media contact
Lionell Martin

ITASCA, Ill. (January 24, 2022) – Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network announced record levels of life-giving donation in Illinois and northwest Indiana for a second consecutive year.

In 2021, 474 organ donors and their families made possible 1,352 lifesaving organ transplants. More than 2,000 people donated bone, skin and other tissue to save or heal patients with severe burns in need of life-saving skin grafts, and restore mobility and health to patients suffering from torn ligaments and tendons, heart and circulatory conditions or diseases and conditions requiring bone grafts.

As one of the nation’s largest organ procurement organizations, Gift of Hope and its work with donors, their families, hospitals, coroners, funeral directors and others involved with successful organ and tissue donation contributed to record donation and transplants across the country last year. The United Network for Organ Sharing announced that more than 40,000 organ transplants took place for the first time. This included record-setting levels of kidney, liver and heart transplants, and new levels of donation that made it possible.

“The record level of lives saved and healed through organ and tissue donation in 2021 is a testament to the increasing number of people who say ‘yes’ to donation, and to the hospitals and many partners in our region working to support donation, despite staffing shortages and the COVID pandemic challenges,” said Harry Wilkins, MD, Gift of Hope President/CEO.

“It is their work and partnership that provides hope for the day that no one will die waiting or suffer needlessly waiting for donated organs and tissues,” Wilkins said. 

A single organ donor can save up to nine lives. A single organ and tissue donor can save or improve the lives of more than 25 people.

To learn more about donation and offer hope to people in need of transplants, visit and join the Illinois Organ/Tissue Donor Registry or Donate Life Indiana registry. A link is provided for residents of other states to locate the donor registry where they live.


About Gift of Hope

Gift of Hope is the not-for-profit organ procurement organization (OPO) that coordinates organ and tissue donation and provides public education on donation in Illinois and northwest Indiana. As one of 57 OPOs that make up the nation’s organ donation system, Gift of Hope works with 180 hospitals and serves 12 million people in its donation service area. Since 1986, its work has saved the lives of more than 23,000 organ transplant recipients and improved the lives of hundreds of thousands of tissue transplant recipients. For more information, visit