Carolinas HealthCare System

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PGA Tour Pro Erik Compton Aims to Raise Organ Donation Awareness

Carolinas HealthCare System and LifeShare of the Carolinas invited transplant recipients to join PGA Tour golfer Erik Compton Tuesday for a youth golf exhibition at Quail Hollow Country Club. Compton, a two-time heart transplant recipient, will play in the Wells Fargo Championship May 2-5.

Compton raises awareness in tournament cities about organ and tissue donation as part of his “Play Through with Erik Compton” campaign in partnership with Donate Life America and Genentech. He shared his personal story of beating the odds to become one of the top golfers in the U.S.

This is Compton’s second year on the PGA Tour. So far this year he has enjoyed a top 10 finish and four top 25 finishes and is currently within the Top 70 in FedEx Cup points.

A Role Model

At the age of nine, Compton was diagnosed with viral cardiomyopathy, a condition that prevents the heart from pumping properly. His first heart transplant came in 1992, when he was 12. He had his second transplant in 2008. In 2013, Erik was among many distinguished recipients of the Donate Life Champion award. This award is given to role models in the sports community who have made a difference by inspiring others through their support for organ donation.

Carolinas HealthCare System’s Carolinas Medical Center is the only transplant center in the region, performing nearly 200 organ transplants per year. Carolinas Medical Center works collaboratively with LifeShare of the Carolinas, its organ recovery partner. Both organizations are federally designated members of the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network.

Transplants by the Numbers

Although more people are saying yes to organ donation, the numbers of people on the transplant waiting list continue to grow:

  • More than 118,000 people are on the organ transplant waiting list in the U.S., including 3,500 in North Carolina.
  • Carolinas HealthCare System has more than 900 patients on the waiting lists at Carolinas Medical Center--waiting for a life-saving organ.
  • Carolinas Medical Center performs on average 25 living kidney donor transplants each year.
  • One organ donor can save up to eight lives.
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