Death has become a commodity. That was the considered opinion of a participant at a conference on bioethics in Pune on the weekend. As many medical professionals have observed, there is an increasing trend in modern medicine of postponing death with the help of artificial life support.
Santosh Sorate was getting desperate. He had been calling Madhukar Thakur, an autorickshaw driver from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai since 8pm — it was almost midnight now. A heart was available and Thakur, 44, who has been on the waiting list for a month was a match according to the records maintained by the Zonal Transplant Coordination Committee (ZTCC).
The ‘Donor’ scene is picking up in the country with at least 13 lakh persons pledging organs last year. However, the demand for new organs is also rising and there is a need to bridge this gap.
Half a decade ago, the total number of organs donated for transplantation in unified Andhra Pradesh used to hover anywhere between 80 and 90 every year. The long wait for desperate patients needing donor organs was unending, as the flow of donor organs was few and far between.
A week-long sensitisation programme for over 850 staff of the Government Rajaji Hospital, conducted by the Transplant Authority of Tamil Nadu (TRANSTAN) and Mohan Foundation, is reaping rich dividends.
On December 10, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj underwent a kidney transplant surgery at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences or AIIMS in Delhi with the kidney from an unrelated donor.
A panel of speakers at the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCC&I) has emphasised the need to spread awareness on the 'Deceased Donor Programme Cadaver Daan', which is aimed at organ donation and transplantation.
India has more than a billion people but just one organ donor for every 2 million of its population. This is amongst the lowest organ donation rates in the world and one of the biggest reasons for this is the lack of awareness about the cause.
In the last 8 years, a total of 4,938 organs have been transplanted in Tamil Nadu, according to Transplant Authourity of Tamil Nadu (TRANSTAN). The southern state is the first Indian state to make certification of brain death mandatory, successfully create a green corridor to transport an organ, and make conversations about organ donation mainstream.
There is an acute shortage of vital organs as there was a huge gap between the requirement and the number of vital organs available, Dr N.T.R.University of Health Sciences Vice-Chancellor T. Ravi Raju said.