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State Senator Jackie Speier introduced a bill to create a statewide organ donation registry. Speier says family members would still have to approve of any organ donation for deceased relatives, but the registry would make the decision easier for the loved ones.
The national average for organ donations rose in the first half of last year by about four percent, but donations in California dropped by 13 percent.
Medical officials and those who coordinate donors with recipients say more public education is needed -- especially among minorities, who make up 70 percent of those on the waiting list for an organ. Organ donations among minorities are lower than the rest of the population, which officials say leads to a disproportionate number of minorities on the list of recipients.
Speier's bill would cost $500,000 to get the registry started, and $250,000 a year thereafter to operate.
(This story was provided by News10 KXTV Sacramento.)