Every once in a while you get a glimpse into someone else's life, see them struggle and then triumph, watch their pain turn to joy. That's the essence of a story in our documentary, Breathing with Sandra. It's about how two sisters devastated by their Mom's death at 51, agree to donate her organs and how another woman 30 years old in a medically induced coma, her own lungs useless gets a gift. The rules are strict, they were never supposed to meet but they broke the rules and forged a bond that helped everyone recover.
Part Two of The Current
Breathing with Sandra
Organ donations have not only saved lives, they can help soften the grief of many people who know a part of their loved one has helped another survive. But what donor families rarely get is a "thank you." Provincial regulations prevent contact between organ recipients and the families of the deceased.
In some cases, an anonymous correspondence is allowed. But in the U.S., the UK and Australia donor families and recipients can exchange information and even meet. Next year, Nova Scotia will be the first province in Canada with legislation that would allow communication between donor families and recipients if each agrees.
Still, very occasionally, there are barriers that are broken and these two groups do come together in Canada. This morning we bring you a rare story of one such a meeting. Aziza Sindhu's documentary is called Breathing with Sandra.
The Government of Nova Scotia is changing its Organ and Tissue Donation Act to allow an information exchange between donor families and recipients, if both parties consent. The new legislation is unprecedented in Canada and should come into effect sometime next year.
Other segments from today's show: