Transplant hope for one of our own

Employee News & Views Editor: May 31, 20134 Comments

Isn’t it nice to work with genuinely “good” people?  People who make you feel comfortable, motivate you, and can teach you by example?  I must share that I have had the pleasure of working with such an exceptional person and I would like to recognize and thank him for his dedication and hard work- especially considering his personal health challenges.  This person is Todd Whorton, one of Community’s dedicated employees of 24 years and leader of the Dialysis Services in all three of Community Medical Center’s facilities.

The astounding thing is that Todd is also a dialysis patient and is in need of a kidney transplant, but you would never know it if you crossed paths with him at work today.  He is an example of a true leader in every area of his life and he leads with great motivation and passion. He is the father of two young girls and husband to a very supportive wife. He gives credit to God and his family for being his main sources of inspiration.  It is this great inspiration carrying over into his display of outstanding patient advocacy that lends hope to so many of our patients living with kidney disease.  Through his relatable experience and his words of encouragement, our patients find hope through the emotional struggle and physical challenges of kidney treatment.

I have been with Community Regional Medical Center for a total of 20 years. During my time here, I have met some remarkable people.  I have been humbled by co-workers who, against all odds, continue their education part-time or with night school-- on top of working and caring for their families (a balancing act with which many of us are familiar).  I’ve also witnessed other dedicated staff members who have defied the odds with chronic illnesses or cancer and continue to persevere.  Regardless of the great number of treatments their health requires, they take these treatments (like dialysis) and handle great personal struggle with grace, all the while accepting the challenges of their work with distinction and respect for others.

Todd is a great example of this type of staff member.

Todd has dealt with kidney disease for close to 30 years and has endured both hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Over the course of his kidney disease, he has received the gift of life in the form of two kidney transplants which afforded him the best quality of life.   His first kidney transplant lasted seventeen years and the second transplant, eight years. During all this, Todd became a very moving and effective speaker at renal transplant conferences in the area.  Now, Todd is on a very long list and waits with hundreds of thousands of dialysis patients who share a similar hope of getting the chance for a transplant. He has restarted dialysis, and together he and his family remain hopeful and wait again for another kidney. Against all odds, Todd continues to battle his failed kidneys and End Stage Renal Disease while his faith never falters. He maintains the hope that someday, he’ll be given another kidney. 

I, as well as Todd’s co-workers, felt his story needed to be shared so others can learn to be aware of the sacrifices that are made on a daily basis, the efforts that go into “work with a smile”, and the amazing strength it takes to be here doing a great job, even when one’s health can take a turn for the worse at any time. 

If you know Todd, you know that he comes to work every day and puts in 200%. We love him for all that he does. Hurray for Todd and the belief that there is hope everywhere! Todd’s personal story touches us because not only does he set a great example, but he also reminds us of the importance of giving. Perhaps the reader of this blog could be the hope that gives Todd or someone else on the wait list a chance for a transplant.

*If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about kidney donation, please contact “Donate Life California” at (866) 797-2366 or visit www.donateLIFEcalifornia.org

Donors need to be between the ages of 18 and early 70s and can include parents, children, siblings, other relatives, and friends. An ideal donor should have a genuine interest in donating and a compatible blood type with the recipient.

Donors should be in good general health. Donors do not need to be genetically related. Typically, someone who has cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease, sickle cell disease, HIV or hepatitis will not qualify to be a donor. However, these diseases are not all absolute disqualifications to donation. Every donor will be considered on an individual basis.

Kathy Toscano-Smith FNP
Diabetes Medical Home
Community Regional Medical Center

4 responses to Transplant hope for one of our own

Thanks Kathy for the post. We

Thanks Kathy for the post. We should learn something from Tedd. Despite of so many odds, he is still fighting and has hope. I admire You. Incidences of kidney failure have doubled up in the last 15 years because there are large number of people with diabetes and hypertension.The most common cause for a kidney transplant is end-stage kidney failure (due to diabetes, uncontrolled blood pressure and glomerulonephritis which is an inflammation in the filtering units of the kidney called glomeruli).


Thank you

What a wonderful, inspiring story. I represent the California Transplant Donor Network here for the Community Medical Centers and we hope Mr. Wharton knows there are many people collaborating to help patients who await a life saving organ or tissue transplant. Thank you for sharing the California Donor Registry address--which is the best way to ensure your wishes to donate will be honored. Highlighting stories about people who are wonderful stewards of the "Gift of Life" is very encouraging!


Thank you Kathy, Very nice

Thank you Kathy, Very nice article, you are a blessing. May God bless you, Sincerely, Marlene


Transplant hope for one of our own

Thanks to Kathy for putting into words what so many of us feel about Todd. I have also worked with him for many years. I can echo everything Kathy says about Todd, his attitude and his work ethic. He is definitely an excellent employee but more importantly, he is an exemplary person. We are blessed to have Todd as a part of our Community family. Hoping and praying for a successful transplant.


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