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

A young Sicamous Canada Day parade-goer is awed by a colourful float filled with beloved Disney characters during the July 1, 2020 community event. (File photo)
Editorial: Now is the time for Sicamous to shine

Shuswap community might be just what people who work from home are looking for

Greyhound Canada announced May 13 it was closing operations permanently after more than a century of operation. (Black Press file photo)
COLUMN: Goodbye to a never forgotten friend

Greyhound bus trips played a big role in columnist’s life

The BC Conservation Officer Service (COS) handed out fines to two anglers on Shuswap Lake who were both casting more than one line, in violation of provincial regulations, Saturday, May 15, 2021. (COS photo)
Conservation officers snag Shuswap anglers for unlawful fishing

Two anglers were given $150 fines for casting two lines at once, against provincial regulations

The future of the Okanagan Lake watershed land use will be subject of a new study supported by a $300,000 grant from the Vancouver Foundation. (Contributed)
Grant to help develop Okanagan Lake protection strategy

Study receives $300,000 grant from the Vancouver Foundation.

As they carry out a FireSmart assessment in Salmon Arm, firefighters Carmen Guidos and Steve St. Denis show one of the easy-to-rectify fire hazards that can exist for unsuspecting residents. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)
Column: Lessons on welcoming a wildfire into your home

The View From Here by Martha Wickett

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

A man and woman, both 33 and from Kelowna, were arrested on Postill Lake Forest Service Road in possession of two stolen vehicles Friday, May 14, 2021. (File photo)
Kelowna duo arrested with stolen vehicles after ‘brief’ bicycle getaway attempt

A man and a woman were arrested on a forest service road on numerous pending charges

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

Lynda Saundry, born 1961, is charged with the murder of North Okanagan resident Barry Jones in July 2020. Saundry will appear in Vernon court May 17, 2021, to fix a date for a preliminary inquiry. (Facebook public photo)
North Okanagan murder suspect to be tried by judge and jury

Lynda Saundry is charged with the first-degree murder of Barry Jones in July 2020

Vernon Search and Rescue’s Legacy vessel is returning to Okanagan Lake for boating season, the society said Friday, May 14, 2021. (VSAR photo)
Vernon Search and Rescue vessel returns to Okanagan Lake

VSAR’s Legacy is back with a fresh coat of paint and some other upgrades

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

The first Black judge named to the BC Supreme Court, Selwyn Romilly, was handcuffed at 9:15 a.m. May 14 while walking along the seawall. (YouTube/Screen grab)
Police apologize after wrongly arresting B.C.’s first Black Supreme Court Justice

At 81 years old, the retired judge was handcuffed in public while out for a walk Friday morning

Most Read