(This myth can actually go two ways)
Myth 2a - Even if I never tell anyone, as long as I am registered as an organ donor on my driver's license and the medical personal are aware of that fact, my organs will be used.
Myth 2b - Even if I am registered as a donor on my driver's license, my organs will not be used unless I tell my closest of kin of my wishes and they are able to follow through.
The truth and false to these two myths really all depends on what state (in the US) you live in. Up until recently, Myth 2b was true for every state. If your next of kin either could not be contacted or was unwilling or unable to confirm your intent to be a donor, the indication on your driver's license meant nothing, legally. The family ultimately had the final say.
But, recently, several states have passed laws similar to the one passed just a few months ago in NC that make Myth 2a true. The Heart Prevails Act of NC declares that, even if the next of kin either cannot be contacted or is unwilling to consent, the little heart symbol on your NC driver's license is legal consent to allow medical personnel to begin the process of organ recovery. (Tissue donation still must be consented to by family.)
These new laws/acts are incredibly beneficial, for several reasons:
1) They help to insure that the wishes of the deceased are carried out.
2) They help take the pressure off of the family to make the final decision.
3) The make the entire organ recovery and donation process easier, quicker and safer, insuring that recipients have a better chance of survival.
4) They increase the number of available organs.
It is still incredibly important, no matter what state you live in, to notify your family of your wishes, even if it is just to help them be prepared.
Take a few minutes to Click Here and discover how you can become an organ donor in your state of residence and how to help insure that your wishes are carried out upon your death.
Read more about Organ Donation Myths.