A summit on Organ Donation and Transplantation in Children was conducted at Fortis Memorial Research Institute (FMRI) on July 29th; 2017.The program was hosted by Fortis Organ Retrieval & Transplant (FORT) and Department of Pediatrics, FMRI and was co-hosted with MOHAN Foundation under the aegis of National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organization (NOTTO). The national level meeting was supported by International Society for Organ Donation and Procurement (ISODP), Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP), College of Pediatric Critical Care (CPCC) and Indian Society of Critical Care Medicine (ISCCM).
The topics discussed included brain death tests for children, role of ancillary tests, challenges in counselling the families for organ donation and challenges in donor optimization, retrieval and transplantation. There is a shortage of organs for transplantation especially for the children.
Dr. Avnish Seth, Director FORT during his session spoke on the issues of maintaining the quality of organs in pediatric brain dead organ donor, the need for a streamlined pediatric recipient registry etc. He also mentioned that the ‘Transplantation of Human Organs Act 2011’ and Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Rules 2014’ have not adequately addressed the issues of organ donation with the children. The interval between brain death tests in adults is six hours whereas the time interval for children is not specified in the law. Dr Krishan Chugh, Director & HOD, Pediatrics & PICU, FMRI Gurgaon said that transplantation is a life saving treatment for children with defective organs.
Pediatric organ donation is different from adult donation. When the potential donor is below the age of 18, the parent or legal guardian has to consent for donation. Organ donation is difficult as the loss of a child is always tragic and the topic of donation can be hard on the parents. With more initiatives like this from across India, there can be a rise in organ donation and transplantation rates for both adults and children.