Paramedic Matthew Schlatter of Victoria is living a fuller life today due to the double lung transplant he received in 2019. He encourages B.C. residents to register as an organ donor and let their families know their wishes. (Instagram/Matthew Schlatter)

Paramedic Matthew Schlatter of Victoria is living a fuller life today due to the double lung transplant he received in 2019. He encourages B.C. residents to register as an organ donor and let their families know their wishes. (Instagram/Matthew Schlatter)

B.C. man living a full, active life after double-lung transplant

Matt Schlatter encourages people to register as an organ donor to help others live

Matt Schlatter fulfilled his dream of becoming a paramedic and living an active life after receiving a double lung transplant two years ago.

Having battled cystic fibrosis his whole life, the native of Victoria, now 25, has beat the drum for organ donor registration since, but especially in April – organ donation awareness month. His experience with life-saving surgery followed someone’s selfless decision to make their organs available in the event of their death.

“Without the generous gift of an organ donor, I would not be here today,” he stated in a release. “All of the things I didn’t have the energy or health to do before my transplant, I’m now able to accomplish and more!”

RELATED STORY: Kidney Month show at Hermann’s honours memory of Victoria jazz club owner

A quick scan of Schlatter’s Instagram page, post-surgery, finds photos of him engaged in such outdoor activities as hiking, boating, surfing, kayaking, tubing, kite surfing and more.

Schlatter, who has been working as a paramedic in Ladysmith and recently accepted a job in Vancouver, where he started April 16, encourages people to look into organ donation then consider registering their decision.

“We don’t need our organs once we pass away, so why not give them to someone who does?” he asked. “All it takes is two minutes to register as a donor, with the potential to change the lives of people waiting.”

With approximately 700 people awaiting transplants in B.C., he said it’s important for people to sign up for the Organ Donor Registry at taketwominutes.ca and let family members know your wishes.

The death of hockey player Logan Boulet, a registered donor, in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash in 2018 inspired tens of thousands of Canadians to sign up as organ donors knowing that his donations allowed six other people to live on. Green Shirt Day on April 7 honoured his legacy.

RELATED STORY: Three years after Broncos bus crash, Logan Boulet still inspiring organ donation

BC Transplant states that only about one per cent of all deaths occur in a way that would enable someone to be an organ donor, and no age limit exists for donation if a suitable match recipient is found.

Deceased donors can have up to eight organs transplanted, including two kidneys, two lungs, liver, heart, pancreas and small intestine.

Live donors can pass on a kidney to someone with the same blood type and other match criteria, and the outcome is generally better than with a deceased donor, BC Transplant says. Even one’s corneas can be transplanted to help people with blindness, a process overseen by the Eye Bank of British Columbia at eyebankofbc.ca.

For more information on organ donation, visit transplant.bc.ca. For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

Signature code

Healthcare and Medicine

Just Posted

Construction work in 2020 at Nelson’s Mountain Station reservoir. Photo: Bill Metcalfe
New report outlines how to protect Nelson’s water sources

Document looks at stream flows, forests, terrain stability, wildfires, flooding, and more

South Okanagan MP Richard Cannings wants to see dental coverage for all Canadians. (courtesy of Pixabay)
OPINION: South Okanagan MP fights for universal dental care

One in three Canadians have no dental coverage, with COVID making it even worse

COVID-19 cases are once again dropping across the West Kootenay. Illustration: BC Centre for Disease Control
Ten new cases of COVID-19 in Nelson area

Numbers are steadily dropping across the West Kootenay

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
One death, 39 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

There are 484 active cases of the virus in the region currently

Portions of the Skattebo Reach Trail are being improved. Photo: Betsy Kline
Skattebo Reach Trail near Castlegar to become cycle friendly

Trail improvements geared towards cyclists being done in 2021

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Brian Peach rescues ducklings from a storm drain in Smithers May 12. (Lauren L’Orsa video screen shot)
VIDEO: Smithers neighbours rescue ducklings from storm drain

Momma and babies made it safely back to the creek that runs behind Turner Way

Signage for ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is shown in Victoria, B.C., on February 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
$150 refunds issued to eligible customers following ICBC’s switch to ‘enhanced care’

Savings amassed from the insurance policy change will lead to one-time rebates for close to 4 million customers

The Libby Dam on the Kootenai River in Montana. The dam created the Koocanusa Reservoir, which straddles the B.C./Montana border. (photo courtesy Wikipedia)
Outflow at Libby Dam to be increased

Volume increase to aid migration and spawning conditions for endangered white sturgeon in the Kootenai River

Police investigate a fatal 2011 shooting in a strip mall across from Central City Shopping Centre, which was deemed a gang hit. The Mayor’s Gang Task Force zeroed in on ways to reduce gang involvement and activity. (File photo)
COVID-19 could be a cause in public nature of B.C. gang violence: expert

Martin Bouchard says the pandemic has changed people’s routines and they aren’t getting out of their homes often, which could play a role in the brazen nature of shootings

Tinder, an online dating application that allows users to anonymously swipe to like or dislike other’s profiles. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. man granted paternity test to see if Tinder match-up led to a ‘beautiful baby’

The plaintiff is seeking contact with the married woman’s infant who he believes is his child

Nurse Tami Arnold prepares to administer a COVID-19 vaccine. (Kareem Elgazzar/AP)
B.C. adults 30+ now eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19

Health officials made the announcement Wednesday afternoon

Richard Green writes poetry under the nom de plume Rick the Poet Warrior. Homeless, Green sometimes spends his summers in Revelstoke but winters in Victoria, travelling to Ontario to visit his sister whenever he can. (Jocelyn Doll - Revelstoke Review)
Revelstoke nomad pens poetry, offers insight into homelessness

Rick the Poet Warrior’s books can be found online as well as at the Revelstoke library

Most Read