(WXYZ) – Many Michigan residents support organ transplant as 62% of adults are on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry.
But despite this, there are still over 3,000 Michigan residents waiting for an organ transplant.
Why is the wait list so long?
There are a couple of issues. One is that some counties have low registration rates, so not enough people are signed as donors. Another is that organs have a shelf life. There’s only a certain amount of time that an organ can be transplanted successfully. So that’s why we need more people to sign up.
Many on the wait list are looking at terminal or irreversible organ failure. They may need an organ like the lungs, heart, kidneys, liver or pancreas. It’s phenomenal that one donor can save the lives of 8 people. And donated tissue can help up to 75 people.
This is truly a life-enhancing opportunity for recipients to move, see and live better lives. Last year alone, 320 Michigan organ donors lead to 876 life-saving organ transplants. Which is wonderful but we can definitely raise these numbers and help more people.
Does it cost money to donate?
No, the donor’s family or estate will not have to pay for anything. Another question people ask is if the surgical procedure will disfigure their loved one’s body. It’s important to know that the organs and tissues are recovered by trained medical professionals. So a traditional funeral service can still take place.
How easy is it to become an organ donor?
It’s very easy. With just a few clicks, you can register online at ExpressSOS.com.
You can also add your name when you renew or replace your driver’s license at the Secretary of State either online, through the mail, or in person.
By doing this, you may one day give someone a second chance at life
I’ve seen patients of mine who are on the brink of death get their lives back. It’s a truly amazing thing to see.
- Don’t worry about your physical health or medical conditions. Anyone can be an organ donor and upon your passing, medical professionals will decide if your organs are suitable.
- Let your family know you’ve registered. In Michigan, once you’ve signed the registry, your loved ones cannot override this decision (however you have the option to change your mind at any time). It’s best if your family hears from you personally how you’d like to help others as this can ease potential apprehensions/concerns if/when the time comes.
- Please speak to your spiritual leader if you belong to a religion and aren’t sure if they support organ donation. However, most major faiths do see organ and tissue donations as an act of giving.
- Please consider a financial contribution which helps provide support for transplant recipients. Visit giftoflifefoundationmi.org/ for more info.
You can find more information about organ and tissue donation by contacting the Gift of Life Michigan at 1-866-500-5801, www.giftoflifemichigan.org
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Data pulled from WXYZ