April is National Donate Life Month Physicians and patients alike are encouraged to sign up to be organ donors with Donate Life California. By Maria Jennings More than 120,000 Americans are currently awaiting organ transplant. In honor of April being National Donate Life Month, the Santa Cruz County Medical Society, along with the California Medical Association, is encouraging all physicians to discuss organ donation with their patients, and encouraging both patients and donors alike to register as organs, eyes and tissue donors at Donate Life California . Some key facts to highlight about organ, tissue and eye donation: When someone is admitted to the hospital, saving his or her life is the number one priority. Two doctors not involved in organ and tissue donation must declare you brain dead before organ and tissue donation can be considered. One person can save eight lives and enhance fifty others through organ and tissue donation. Anyone can become a potential donor regardless of age, ethnicity or medical history. All major religions support or permit organ and tissue donation. The body is treated with respect and dignity throughout the entire donation process. There is no cost to donors or their families. In California, 21,000 patients are currently awaiting organ and tissue donation. Eighteen patients in California die every day waiting for a transplant. To help, visit Donate Life California to sign up to become an organ and tissue donor. If you have already registered via the Department of Motor Vehicles, you can use this website to access or update your registry data. Talk about organ donation with others, and educate them on the importance of donation. Encourage them to become a donor as well. Donate Life California is the official state-authorized nonprofit organization charged with maintaining the organ, eye and tissue registry. For more information, visit Donate Life California and read CMA's full coverage of National Donate Life Month.