Media Center

What Reporters Need to Know:

Here are some helpful items to review before beginning a story:

The words “harvest” or “cadaveric donor” are outdated and no longer appropriate.  “Recover” and “deceased donor” are used by organ procurement and transplantation professionals instead.  The word “ventilator” is used instead of “life support.”   “OPO” stands for organ procurement organization. See Reporters Guide for more explanation.

Who is WRTC?
WRTC is the federally-designated, non-profit OPO (organ procurement organization) for Washington, DC, Northern Virginia and suburban Maryland.  WRTC identifies, coordinates and manages all organ, eye and tissue donors at more than 44 health care institutions in the area.  WRTC also provides free public education, bereavement programs and any communication that may or may not occur between a donor family and a recipient.  WRTC coordinates the first community-based living kidney donor program in the nation, which allows strangers to donate to other strangers in three ways.

Who WRTC is not:
not a hospital or transplant center, yet it officially deals closely with all area hospitals on donation and recovery and transplant centers and UNOS on allocation of organs.

What WRTC can provide:
If you are a member of the media and need some information, WRTC is happy to provide help in any way, specifically with:

  • Local and national waiting list patient totals
  • Industry experts
    Lori Brigham, WRTC President and Chief Executive Officer, has led WRTC for 25 years;
    Dr. Carlos Fernandez-Bueno, WRTC Medical Director, is an abdominal transplant surgeon;
    Organ and Tissue Advisory Committee made up of area transplant surgeons and directors, as well as public members from the community
    Clinical Recovery Coordinators who cover all aspects of donation and recovery.
  • Personal Testimonies (see samples):
    Donor family members
    Organ transplant recipients
    Tissue transplant recipients
    Living donors
    Volunteers who want to help educate the public by telling their own experiences
  • Reporter’s Guide has more tips for stories.  

For Media Inquirires: Call Lesley Compagnone, WRTC’s manager of public affairs and community education at 703-641-0100 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  After normal business hours, the media specialist on call will be paged.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.