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Woman Who Posted ‘Verna Needs a Kidney’ Billboards Will Finally Get a Kidney

Alabama native information station WIAT studies that Verna Johnson, who carried out a 5 month marketing campaign of billboard commercials in Birmingham and Montgomery to discover a kidney donor, has succeeded.

Johnson was recognized with kidney illness in 2017. Her organs continued to lose perform, requiring her to be positioned on dialysis for so long as eight hours a day. By July of 2019, she had simply 6 p.c kidney perform, and the one doable treatment was an organ transplant.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, a brand new affected person is added to the ready checklist for a kidney transplant each 14 minutes. That checklist now stretches over 100,000 folks lengthy. Alabama has the longest wait time within the United States, with the Alabama Kidney Foundation reporting over 1,300 sufferers in want.

Woman Who Posted 'Verna Needs a Kidney' Billboards Will Finally Get a Kidney
Doctors performing transplant surgical procedure gpointstudio / Getty Images

Johnson’s sister Marcella was additionally on that checklist, and waited 11 years with out getting a donated kidney. She handed away in 2015. When Verna Johnson was recognized two years later, docs informed her it may very well be 5 to 10 years for her to get a match.

Verna Johnson knew that she wasn’t going to discover a kidney donor by atypical means. So she contracted with a neighborhood digital promoting firm to run daring, brilliant adverts with an image of herself captioned with “Verna Needs A Kidney” and the cellphone quantity for the UAB Medical Center.

She additionally had T-shirts and automobile magnets printed up to attract consideration to her plight.

Jefferson County Health Department credit score union teller Jaime Burchfield reached out to the medical middle after seeing one of many billboards. She had the required matching blood sort and had seen a narrative about Verna shared to her church’s Facebook web page.

“I saw the Facebook post once and then I thought, ‘I don’t really know.’ Like, ‘Why would they want my kidney?'” Burchfield informed the Montgomery Advertiser. “Then I saw it again and then I was like, ‘OK God, I hear you. You’re telling me again you want me to do this’.”

Johnson posted her assembly with Burchfield on Facebook, because the docs launched the 2 for the primary time.

It is with nice pleasure and anticipation that we announce VERNA “GOT†A KIDNEY!In the large image, Kidney Disease has turn out to be a nationwide epidemic. In America, 37 million adults endure from Chronic Kidney Disease. Over 94,000 individuals are on the Kidney Donor Waiting List. This checklist continues to develop in dimension yr after yr.Here at dwelling, Alabama ranks fifth Worst within the nation within the variety of circumstances of Kidney Disease. Recent research reveal that Alabama has the longest transplant wait time of any state within the nation. The common nationwide wait time is 3-5 years. In Alabama, you might simply improve that wait time to 7 years or extra.The Verna Needs A Kidney Facebook web page launched in April of 2019. From the start, our perception was “if we carried the message, God would do the remaining. Through His grace and the laborious work of many loving folks, Verna’s marketing campaign was capable of scale back the wait time to simply 5 months.I’ve heard it stated that “generally miracles are simply good folks with variety hearts that God sends your method.†That was undoubtedly the case right here. Verna’s profitable marketing campaign was the results of social media, information retailers, and companies… partnering with the group.The VERNA NEEDS A KIDNEY Facebook web page wish to categorical gratitude to all concerned! Thank you to your empathy and assist! Any grassroots group or marketing campaign is void with out group assist. The love the general public poured onto the “Verna Needs A Kidney” Facebook web page was wonderful! We could not all be referred to as to donate a kidney, however we’re all referred to as to care! Thank you for all of the “prayers†and “sharesâ€! By serving to get the phrase out…. you’re equally answerable for this miracle!A particular “Thank You†goes out to Mashburn Outdoor Advertising. The firm’s billboards in Birmingham and Montgomery proclaimed VERNA NEEDS A KIDNEY to 1000’s and 1000’s of commuters every day. What started as an organization making an attempt to make a distinction led to a deep friendship with Verna’s marketing campaign. The complete firm adopted Verna’s progress and cheered her on as updates had been shared!We would additionally wish to thank all reporters and information retailers that coated Verna’s story. Your compassion in reporting has not solely helped Verna, but additionally furthered consciousness of kidney illness and the necessity for Living Kidney Donors. Thank you for every thing you will have performed and proceed to do within the identify of Organ Donation. You are serving to to save lots of lives!Finally, phrases can’t categorical the emotions of gratitude that Verna Johnson has for her Donor. This brave and selfless act is just not solely saving her life, but additionally including high quality to it! You are an instance of what’s good on the earth! Thank you for stepping ahead and setting an instance for us all.The Living Kidney Donor (Ms. Jaime Burchfield) got here ahead on account of a Facebook submit positioned on the Church Of The Highlands Community Page. Surgery is scheduled for the top of October at UAB Hospital, Birmingham, Alabama. * With respect to donor, recipient, and households… we request privateness the day of surgical procedure.

Posted by Verna Needs A Kidney on Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Surgery is scheduled for the top of October. Johnson will probably be hospitalized for 3 weeks following the transplant, however the former therapist is already considering of resuming her profession as soon as she’s recovered.

“This has given me a sense of power, a sense of wanting to help others and encourage them,” Johnson informed WIAT. “I want to be a voice for others and continue working on their behalf.”

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