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LifeBanc Assists Cleveland Clinic in First Near Total Face Transplant in the United States
Date:12/17/2008

CLEVELAND, Dec. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Background: LifeBanc, the nonprofit organ and tissue recovery organization for Northeast Ohio, participated with the Cleveland Clinic in today's historic news conference announcing the first near total face transplant in the United States.

The following statement is from LifeBanc Chief Executive Officer Gordon Bowen.

"In keeping with LifeBanc's mission of helping to improve and save the lives of others, we worked closely with the Cleveland Clinic on this exceptional case to ensure that the highest medical and ethical standards were maintained. We also consulted with numerous organ and tissue donation organizations around the country and sought guidance from other experts.

"Since this was such an unique case, we collaborated with the Cleveland Clinic to develop a specific consent procedure, above and beyond the normal tissue and organ donation authorization process and limited to just this one situation. I want to emphasize that no one who is a registered organ or tissue donor is affected by this specialized and limited consent process.

"While this case is a remarkable medical advancement, we remain focused on meeting the continuing need to increase organ and tissue donation for those individuals who are in need of life-giving transplants. More than 100,000 men, women and children throughout the country -- including several thousand here in Ohio -- are waiting for transplants to continue living. We are dedicated to helping them receive the gift of life that organ and tissue donation makes possible."

About LifeBanc (http://www.lifebanc.org )

For nearly 25 years, LifeBanc has been providing the gift of life to thousands of men, women and children in need of life-saving transplants. LifeBanc is the federally designated nonprofit organ and tissue recovery organization for Northeast Ohio. As one of the original seven independent organ procurement organizations in the United States, LifeBanc serves a population of 4.3 million people and works with 80 hospitals in 20 counties. LifeBanc educates the public and medical professionals about the benefits of and need for organ and tissue donation, encourages Ohioans to become registered organ and tissue donors, provides life-saving organs and tissues to those who are waiting and offers bereavement support to grieving families.


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