Facebook Allows Users to Disclose Organ Donor Status

On average, 18 people each day die waiting for an organ transplant. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is trying to combat the discouraging figure with his latest feature

(Image: File)

With more than half a billion people on Facebook, the company’s chief executive continues to encourage users to utilize the platform for social good. In an exclusive interview with ABC’s Good Morning America, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg announced Tuesday the addition of a new feature that allows users to share their organ status with their friends.

Users can add that they are an organ donor to their Facebook timeline, and share their story about when, where or why they decided to become a donor. If a user is not already registered, they will find a link to the appropriate state or national donor registry.

In Facebook’s press statement about the project, the social media company said: “More than 114,000 people in the United States, and millions more around the globe, are waiting for the heart, kidney or liver transplant that will save their lives. Many of those people – an average of 18 people per day – will die waiting, because there simply aren’t enough organ donors to meet the need. Medical experts believe that broader awareness about organ donation could go a long way toward solving this crisis. And we believe that by simply telling people that you’re an organ donor, the power of sharing and connection can play an important role.”

In the GMA interview, the 27-year-old Facebook founder said his close relationship with Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs inspired him to use Facebook to spread awareness. While being treated for pancreatic cancer, Jobs underwent a liver transplant. The young tycoon was also encouraged by his med-student girlfriend to create the tool for the social networking site.

Watch the video to see how the latest feature works:


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