For 2,000 patients, wait for kidney transplant far from over
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THOUGH organ donations in the city saw a 15-year high in 2012, there continues to be a long queue of people waiting for both kidney and liver transplants here. According to the city's Zonal Transplant and Coordination Committee (ZTCC), there are 2,000 people awaiting kidney transplant, while 68 are in line for liver transplant.
Of the 26 donations last year, 43 kidneys, 18 livers and two lungs were transplanted successfuly, with one of the livers coming from Pune. This year, the city has already recorded nine donations of which 16 kidneys and nine livers were transplanted successfuly. Most of these transplant procedures were done in private hospitals.
"There is a shortage of people coming forward to donate organs. In addition, there are medical criteria and procedures to ensure that the donor's organs won't be rejected by recipient's body. At present, we only have a list of people who are waiting for organs. Soon, we will build a database of people who have pledged to donate organs after their death," said Dr Sujata Patwardhan, secretary of the ZTCC.
At present in Maharashtra, if a person wants to donate organs post-death, a donor card has to be signed and kept with the donor to indicate that s/he is willing to be an organ donor. The family has to be aware of this.
"As per the law, the next of kin of a potential donor must agree to go ahead with donating their family member's organs. So, even if a person has willingly agreed to be a donor and the next of kin disagrees, the operation cannot take place. It is essential that the family is receptive, for which there needs to be public awareness," said Dr Gustad Daver, medical director of Hindjua Hospital and president of ZTCC.
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu continues to be a benchmark in organ transplantation with close to 800 major procedures in the past four years. The state government is also trying to emulate the Tamil Nadu model by making it mandatory for 25-bed hospitals with an ICU to report brain dead patients from whom organs can be harvested and transplant procedures then take place in registered centres with necessary infrastrcure. The government is also exploring the possibility of mentioning the donor status of every individual on driving licences as well as college identity cards.
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