The increasing number of drug overdose deaths has led to a rise in the number of organ donations, according to The New York Times.
In New England, which has seen a surge of drug overdose deaths, there have been organ donations this year from 69 people who died of an overdose. This accounts for 27 percent of all donations in the region. In 2010, 4 percent of donors in New England died of drug overdoses.
More than 970 people who died of drug overdoses nationwide have donated organs so far this year. This accounts for about 12 percent of total donations. In 2010, about 4 percent of U.S. organ donations came from people who died of drug overdoses.
Dr. David Klassen, Chief Medical Officer for the United Network for Organ Sharing, which administers the nation’s organ procurement network, told the newspaper that these donors tend to be younger and healthier than other donors.