Bengaluru: Path-breaking tech to facilitate kidney transplants

DECCAN CHRONICLE.
Published May 3, 2017, 7:01 am IST
Updated May 3, 2017, 7:16 am IST
The computer programme matches willing, incompatible donor and recipient pairs.
 The software would help secure a living donor for every patient that needs one.
  The software would help secure a living donor for every patient that needs one.

BENGALURU: Paired Kidney donation, a concept introduced by the US-based not-for-profit organisation Alliance for Paired Kidney, founded by UT transplant surgeon Dr Mike Rees, might soon be a reality here in Bengaluru, a city that’s battling high dialysis costs and a long waiting list for transplants. Dr Rees, Dr Eric Velez, founder, Pre-Renal (an NGO that runs a paired kidney donation programme in Mexico) and Dr Shalini Rajneesh, Principal Secretary (Health and Family Welfare), along with members of the Gift Your Organ Foundation talked about the possibilities of paired kidney alliances in Bengaluru on Tuesday.

Pairing takes place with the help of a software developed by computer programmer Alan Rees, who, along with his son, designed the first prototype of a paired kidney donation matching system in 2000. The computer programme matches willing, incompatible donor and recipient pairs. Dr Rees completed the first transplant through the internet- based matching system four years later.

AKPD uses a Nobel Prize-winning  algorithm to match one incompatible pair with another. A scoring rubric developed by a team of healthcare professionals is used to find the best possible match. "We are ready with a software and are willing to give the State which is where innovation happens the software as well. We want to give you access to our 15 years of donationa and the software and not make the mistakes which we made. The software would help secure a living donor for every patient that needs one," explains Dr Rees who adds that their organisation has already facilitated international kidney exchange programs in, Greece, Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Philippines.

APKD is already in talks with Gift your organ Foundation to start with the program of creating an altruistic donor chain. The Foundation is already in talks with four hospitals to implement the software and set the donor pool ready. Speaking about challenges Dr Rees adds, "Indian law has to be modified further because what if your first degree relative does not love you enough to donate? But, there is one willing donor who wants to help and donate," he adds.

Location: India, Karnataka, Bengaluru

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