Michigan organ donor registration rising

Capital News Service
LANSING — The number of new heart-shaped organ donor emblems on Michigan drivers’ licenses grew by more than 25 percent in 2011, but state officials and organizers haven’t stopped recruiting. In 2011, more than 400,000 people joined the registry of drivers willing to donate their organs and tissue in the case of a fatal accident. Last year, 900 people received organ transplants from Michigan donors, and thousands of people likely benefited from tissue donations such as skin, said Tim Makinen, communications manager for the organ and tissue recovery organization Gift of Life Michigan in Ann Arbor. Projections indicate the number of new registered donors could rise to half a million by the end of this year. Statewide, that’s about 37 percent of the population — a number still behind the nationwide average of about 43 percent, Makinen said.

Organ trafficking raises concerns amid donor shortage

Capital News Service
LANSING – Organ trafficking is an illegal but thriving trade in the world, according to Monir Moniruzzaman, a Michigan State University anthropologist. He retells the story he heard from Dildar, a 32-year-old Bangladeshi who sold one of his kidneys. “When a fox catches a chicken, the little one cries. I was the chicken and the buyer was the fox. On the day of the operation, I felt like a sacrificial cow purchased for slaughtering,”
For a year-long research project, Moniruzzaman hired an organ broker as an informant and an organ seller as a research assistant.