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A new call for organ donors in Michigan

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)
The pictures and stories of donor & tissue donors and recipients were on display on the state capitol grounds today in Lansing

There’s a new push underway to get more Michiganders to sign up as future organ donors.  

Michigan ranks 44th in the percentage of adults who are registered organ donors.   

Richard Pietroski says that’s not good enough.  He’s the chief executive officer of Gift of Life Michigan.   Pietroski says the 3 thousand critically ill Michiganders waiting for an organ or tissue transplant have to wait longer than they should.  

“Our patients in Michigan wait longer for a lifesaving transplant.  And more people die waiting for that lifesaving procedure," says Pietroski. 

The Secretary of State’s office is trying to get more people to sign up as organ donors when they get their driver’s licenses.    Secretary of State Ruth Johnson says starting earlier this year…her staff was directed to start asking people if they wanted to be organ donors.   The result?  A 40 percent increase in the number of people signing up as organ donors.  

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.