As Singaporeans, we often expect high standards from our leaders. There is nothing wrong with that, although I don’t advocate a sense of entitlement. However, personally, I think it is important that we as citizens do better ourselves.
I recently came across this article in CNA which talks about organ donation in Singapore. We often pride ourselves to be at the top of many things. Our airport, our ports, our technological advancement, our education and our medical care; many of which are top in the world. With our high literacy rate, I would expect that organ donation for our country is also within the top few. Unexpectedly, this is what was lifted from the CNA report:
Singapore had a deceased organ donation rate of 6.6 organ donors per million population (pmp) in 2017, a slight increase from the close to 5 organ donors pmp a decade ago. This is low in comparison to Spain’s 46.9 pmp in 2017, the highest in the world.4 Feb 2021
This is embarassing. Do note that this is for deceased individuals, not even living ones. While we bury our precious organs away to rot, there are countless individuals who are waiting desperately for one. To be honest, I would not have been exposed to this if no one in my family encountered a medical situation. And I think it is the same for many others. Most of us do not know how important it is actually for one to donate their organs until one of their family member requires one.
Hence, in this post, I hope to share and advocate that we step up to this if we can. There are some who mentioned that it is against their religion or cultural belief to donate their organs. But I also believe that many religions also advocate doing good and saving lives. Like what a famous Buddhist saying goes: Saving one life accumalates more good karma than building a seven storey pagoda.
Hence, do consider signing up for MTERA, which is a voluntary act to donate your body for medical purposes when you pass on. I think it is a great, selfless act and I have signed up myself to lead by example.