Michigan license plate to fund, promote organ donation registry

Mar 22, 2012

Michigan drivers now have the option of buying a license plate that will support the state’s organ donor registry.

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley has signed a bill meant to encourage organ donation.

The initial plates will cost an extra $35 and renewals will cost $10 more per year.

Richard Pietroski is CEO of Gift of Life Michigan, a nonprofit organ procurement group.

He says about 2.5 million Michigan residents are already registered to become organ donors, but many more are needed.

"We have, on any given day, about 3,000 individuals waiting for a life-saving organ transplant -- a portion of the 113,000 individuals waiting nationwide," Pietroski says.

Pietroski says one person dies every day in Michigan waiting for a transplant; 18 die in the United States. Kidney and liver transplants top the list, followed by heart, pancreas, lung and other organs.

People can sign up to be a donor at Michigan Secretary of State offices and online.