Organ Donation & Transplantation

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Donor Registry ImageOrgan Donation & Transplantation

More than 2,200 people in Michigan are currently waiting for a life-saving transplant.  There is a need in Michigan for more organ donors.  You can help End the Wait by adding your name to the Michigan Organ Donor RegistrySign up today!


What is Organ Donation?

There are two types of donation – living and deceased donation. 

  • Living donation occurs when a living person donates an organ or part of an organ to someone in need of a transplant.  If you are interested in becoming a living organ donor, contact a transplant center near you for more information (see Michigan Transplant Centers list).  Check out more information on living donation.
  • Deceased donation occurs when a person has passed away and they or their family member consented to give the gift of life.  To learn more about the donation process, visit Gift of Life Michigan’s page How Donation Works.  If you are interested in signing up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry, click here

Facts about Organ and Tissue Donation

FACT: Anyone can be a potential donor regardless of age, race or medical history.
Many do not know that they have the option to be an organ and tissue donor by signing up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry.  Anyone can sign up on the donor registry.  All potential donors are assessed at the time of death to determine what organs and tissues can be donated.

FACT: Most major religions support organ and tissue donation, and see signing up on the donor registry as an act of love.
To find out more about different religious perspectives on organ donation, visit

FACT: Signing up to be an organ and tissue donor does not interfere with medical care.  If you are sick or injured and go to the hospital, the number one priority is to save your life. Signing up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry will not affect your medical care.  The medical care treating you is separate from the transplant team by law. 

FACT: When you are on the transplant waiting list for an organ, all that counts is the severity of your illness, time spent waiting, blood type and other important medical information. There are certain criteria that determine the order of the transplant waiting list.  There are currently more than 3,000 people in the Michigan waiting for a life-saving transplant.  For more information or to be evaluated for an organ transplant, please refer to the list of Michigan Transplant Centers below. 

FACT: An open casket funeral is possible for organ and tissue donors.  Through the entire donation process, the body is treated with care, respect, and dignity.
It is common for organ and tissue donors to have any type of funeral they and their family wish.

FACT: In the United States, it is illegal to buy or sell organs or tissues for transplantation.
Life-saving transplants usually become available only when a deceased donor or donor family has consented to provide the gift of life.  Donors are not paid, nor do recipients pay donors for organs. 

Who Can Donate?

Anyone can sign up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry, no matter their age or health status.  Don’t count yourself out!  To find out more about who can donate and other commonly asked questions, visit the Gift of Life Michigan website’s Frequently Asked Questions. 

Organ Donation & Transplantation Resources

Donate Life America

Donate Life Coalition of America

Gift of Life Michigan

Michigan Donor Family Council

Michigan Secretary of State

United Network of Organ Sharing

Michigan Transplant Centers

In need of a transplant and looking for a transplant center?  Below are the transplant programs in Michigan, both adult and pediatric.

Children’s Hospital of Michigan (Pediatric)
3901 Beaubien
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 745-5481

Harper University Hospital, DMC
3990 John R.
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 745-8040

Henry Ford Hospital
2799 West Grand Boulevard
Detroit, MI 48202
(313) 916-2600

Helen Devos Children’s Hospital (Pediatric)
100 Michigan Street NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(866) 989-7999

Mercy Health St. Mary's
200 Jefferson SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 685-5000

St. John Hospital and Medical Center
22101 Moross
Detroit, MI 48236
(313) 343-3047

University of Michigan Medical Center
1500 East Medical Center Drive
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
(734) 936-4000

William Beaumont Hospital
3601 West Thirteen Mile
Royal Oak, MI 48073
(248) 898-5000

NKF of Illinois

Hispanics/Latinos are 1.5 times more likely than non-Hispanics to suffer from kidney failure. If you or someone you know has kidney disease, get the facts about treatment options from this bilingual website: