Did you know that roughly one-third of the more than 3,000 Michigan residents waiting for organ transplants live in Wayne County, yet only 25 percent of the county’s adults are registered organ, tissue and eye donors?
(By comparison, more than 37 percent of adults statewide and about 43 percent nationally are registered as donors.)
That’s a tremendous gap, one that our partner in organ donation, Gift of Life Michigan, hopes to close through its new ad campaign, “Waiting to Live – Wayne County.”
The campaign features five Wayne County residents – two of whom are Henry Ford Transplant Institute patients – all waiting for life-saving organ transplants.
Henry Ford Hospital has pledged our support to this campaign and our community by asking residents to consider adding their names to the Michigan Organ Donor Registry, a confidential database of people who want to give the gift of life.
I should also note that the Henry Ford Transplant Institute has joined Gift of Life Michigan, the Michigan Eye-Bank, the Michigan Health & Hospital Association and the Donate Life Coalition of Michigan to add one million names to the Michigan organ donor registry too.
As I’ve said before, transplantation of human organs is one of the great accomplishments of modern medical science.
Although still requiring lifelong care with medications and oversight, the transformation of patients, from failing organs to full of life, is truly remarkable.
But behind all of the triumphs of transplantation are the tragedies of the donor and those who remain waiting.
“Waiting to Live – Wayne County” is our opportunity to turn those tragedies into miracles.
The campaign video is posted above. You can also catch it airing now through November on Comcast cable channels BET, ESPN, VH1, TBS, USA and ESPN.
How to sign up to be an organ donor
Signing the back of your driver’s license is no longer the way to become a donor in Michigan.
Instead, you must join the Michigan Organ Donor Registry to receive a red heart emblem for the front of your license. To do so, go to www.giftoflifemichigan.org, call 800.482.4881 or visit any Secretary of State branch office.
And, if you’re already a registered organ donor, please share in the comments section below why you made the decision to sign up. It may encourage someone else to do the same.