To save lives through donation for transplant; to impact millions of lives through donation for medical research… this is our purpose. Together, with our OPO partners, we help donors and their families give the ultimate gift.
Thank you for your partnership throughout 2020 – we made it!! As we enter 2021, we take pride in reflecting our accomplishments despite the challenges faced in 2020 by COVID-19 pandemic:
- IIAM placed over 1100 organs and tissues with medical research, improving treatments for Type 1 Diabetes, exploring airway disorders and other pulmonary diseases, creating safer new medicines, testing cardiac toxicity from non-cardiac related medicines, and – most recently – supporting ongoing COVID-19 studies.
- IIAM was proud to assist our recovery partners supporting 12 neonatal donors and families, now totaling 146 of the tiniest heroes who donated 549 organs and tissues. Groundbreaking work is being done to create a molecular atlas of pulmonary cells; identify the etiology behind Type 1 Diabetes and how the human body succumbs to this disease; understanding the human immune system and how it can become compromised, and so many other life saving and life enhancing medical breakthroughs.
- IIAM acquired 23 new researchers who require donor gifts through our recovery partners to successfully make progress in safe and effective treatments for patients, including improving transplant technology.
- Research Recovery Workshop: IIAM successfully hosted one of its standard two annual, hands-on surgical recovery workshops in January 2020, bringing 26 donor professionals together to demonstrate competencies in the recovery of non-transplantable organs and tissues from donors. 11 OPOs and 3 research entities were represented. IIAM’s Research Recovery Workshops are on hold during the pandemic until further notice. Please check back for updates or contact your IIAM Regional Director for more information.
- Research Managers Workgroup: IIAM debuted its first quarterly Research Managers Workgroup in August 2020, followed in November by the group’s second virtual meeting. The Workgroup was designed to create Best Practices among research partnerships. Together, we hope to improve the process of research placement and, ultimately, make the greatest effort to honor the donor gift. If your OPO has a research focused position and would like to join the Workgroup, please contact Mike Vara or Shannon Edwards for more information about our March 2021 session.
The Vessels that Streamline Progress
The process of providing organs and tissue for research begins with IIAM and our network of all 57 organ procurement organizations (OPOs), our invaluable stewards. IIAM staff work around the clock with OPOs, the frontline for organs and tissues for transplant, and facilitate the recovery of non-transplantable organs for research. These OPOs link us to the donors who we, in turn, link to viable medical research. By promoting research donation through educational in-services and conducting semiannual Research Recovery Workshops, we help OPOs develop more efficient recovery practices and coordination processes to meet the specifications of our research partners. Through this collaboration, we maximize the donor gift while making invaluable contributions to medical science. READ more testimonials below.
NEW: IIAM established a quarterly Research Managers Workgroup to enable Best Practices for Research Placements
IIAM debuted its first quarterly Research Managers Workgroup in August 2020, followed in November by the group’s second virtual meeting. The Workgroup was designed to create Best Practices among research partnerships. Together, we hope to improve the process of research placement and, ultimately, make the greatest effort to honor the donor gift. If your OPO has a research focused position and would like to join the Workgroup, please contact Mike Vara or Shanon Edwards (mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information about our March 2021 session.
IIAM Now Offers eReferrals
We are excited to introduce our eReferrals! As one of many service enhancements IIAM is making, the eReferral is available to you effective immediately. This technology will eliminate the need for calls to initiate organ allocation for medical research through IIAM.
Upon confirmation of your eReferral, a donor medical record will immediately be built in our system. Through our new electronic screening and criteria ‘match runs’, our placement coordinator will commence allocation of organs and contact you with outcomes, achieving a “Referral to Response” in a more accelerated manner.
Recovery Partner Testimonials
Click on the circles below to view the different testimonials.
“Our partnership with IIAM has been in place for nearly 30 years. Through this relationship we have been able to help many families who want to help others through research. Because of our work with IIAM we are able to place many types of organs and tissues and offer families opportunities beyond the high demand research organs. IIAM continues to expand what we can offer to families as well as simplifying the process of referring research organs and tissues.”
– Julie Kemink, Chief Clinical Officer, LifeSource
“Our longstanding partnership with IIAM has enabled us to help countless donor families find comfort in the knowledge that their loved ones have contributed to scientific advancements through research. Our staff greatly appreciate the opportunity to maximize every donation opportunity through research, when transplantation is not an option. We look forward to continuing and increasing our collaboration with IIAM to help advance medical knowledge in the years ahead. It’s the right thing to do for our donor families, for our staff, for our community, and for the field of medicine.”
– Kevin O’Connor, President and Chief Executive Officer, LifeCenter Northwest
“Parents of neonatal donors are desperate for information; IIAM provides them with tremendous solace and gives meaning to their unimaginable loss.”
– R. Patrick Wood, MD, FACS, Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, LifeGift Organ Donation Center
“At LifeShare, we believe providing organs for research is an essential part of our overall mission. This enables us to optimize the gifts of each donor that has authorized research and to maximize the legacy of these donors which is hugely important to their families. Research also allows us to promote advances in healthcare in general and in the treatment of end-stage organ failure in particular. Partnering with IIAM allows LifeShare to more completely fulfill our mission of service to donor families and to those who suffer from life-threatening illness.”
– Jeff Orlowski, President and CEO, LifeShare
“IIAM has everything covered when it comes to honoring these precious gifts — from providing families with resources on their website, to attending our Donor Council reviews.”
– Schawnte Williams-Taylor, Director Family Care Services, LifeGift Organ Donation Center
“Gift of Life Donor Program has championed medical research since the inception of our program in 1974 when we supported IIAM in its work with islet isolation from a donor pancreas in an attempt to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes. Since that time, we have continued to evaluate every organ and tissue donor as a potential donor for research. Gift of Life now places more than 500 organs for research annually as a result of the selfless generosity of donors and donor families. Offering donor families the opportunity for research donation provides them with hope, that from their generous gifts, millions of lives might be changed for the better. We value and appreciate the work and contributions of IIAM.”
– Howard M. Nathan, President and CEO, Gift of Life Donor Program
“Research donation allows us to give a family one final option when transplantation cannot occur. When families or donors choose research, they are not only helping one person with that organ, they could be helping millions. Millions of people are dependent on medical research to develop a new medication or cure for an affliction. Without the generosity of donors and their families who donate organs for research, medical science cannot progress. I have known many donor families that, although transplant was their first hope, they found tremendous pride in knowing their hero may have made such an enormous impact on medical science. It truly is an ultimate gift.”
– Dorrie Dils, CEO, Gift of Life Michigan
“CORE is happy to have been a partner with IIAM since the beginning. The collaboration between our organizations has resulted in numerous advancements in the areas of improving transplantation, understanding of reproductive disorders, early lung development and other pulmonary illnesses, neurological diseases, diabetes & cardiovascular diseases. All of this wonderful work, however, would not have been possible without the generosity of our donor families. One simple word — YES — allows us to provide another layer of comfort to those grieving the loss of their loved ones.”
– Susan Stuart, President & CEO, Center for Organ Recovery and Education