A MAN who was given a new lease of life after his wife successfully donated her kidney to him will participate in a sponsored swim in north county Dublin to raise funds for kidney research at Beaumont Hospital.
The swim from Lambay Island to Rush Harbour will take place on Sunday, August 21, from 9.30am. John Evers (58) and his wife, Josephine Mulyran Evers (56) from Gormanston, were the fourth non-blood related couple in Ireland to participate in a live donor programme. Three years ago, John discovered that his health was deteriorating due to poor kidney function. He was placed on a transplant list and Josephine came forward as a potential candidate to be a live donor. The successful transplant was carried out on January 5 last year at Beaumont Hospital.
“We are looking to create more awareness in Ireland for live donors,
? John told Northside People.
“There is not enough information in the public domain and we really want to highlight the importance of live kidney donations.
“People need to understand that you don’t have to be blood-related to donate.
“We’re far behind our European counterparts with regards to live non-blood related kidney donations.
“I was fortunate enough that my wife was a compatible donor.
“Somebody considering a live donation only has to look at my life from a human point of view – that’s our message. This is all about understanding and awareness.
“The public needs to be more aware of kidney donations in Ireland because it will save lives in the long run.
? According to John, early intervention is vital to the wellbeing of anybody suffering with a kidney disease.He said pre-emptive surgery needs to be promoted to prevent patients from having to endure prolonged dialysis during the prognosis stage.
“I have always been an active person,
? John stated.
“I didn’t need to go on dialysis and this allowed me to continue as best as I could with my lifestyle.
“Josephine and I are outdoor people. We enjoy diving, swimming and hill walking, so imagine the impact early intervention can have.
“It prevents people from getting sick for long periods of time.
? John said early intervention allowed him and his wife to return to work less than twelve weeks after the lifesaving transplant took place.
“The swim will be open to confident swimmers, but we are hoping people will come down to support us and help us with funding for research and awareness,
? he added. Meanwhile, Mark Murphy, chief executive of the Irish Kidney Association, said there was a major shortage of kidney donations last year.
“Last year was one of our worst years for donations but this year it is better,
? he stated.
“Early intervention is great if it is possible at the time as it can only benefit the individual.
?Mr Murphy said funding to the kidney association has been severely cut in recent years.
“Funding to the association is only a quarter of what it used to be,
? he added.
“The HSE has drawn up of a list of other priorities and unfortunately that has affected our funding levels.