New Delhi: Around five lakh Indians die waiting for an organ every year. The perpetual problem of shortage of organs has led to an ever-increasing demand supply gap, even though every person who dies naturally or is declared brain dead is a potential donor.
Sample this — according to figures with the National Organ Transplant and Tissue Organisation (NOTTO), while there is a demand for two lakh kidney transplants annually, only 8,000 are being done.
Similarly, around 50,000 people need liver transplants and 30,000 need heart transplants against the availability of 3,000 and 100 respectively. Besides, Delhi lags far behind in terms of organ donation when compared with other states like Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Maharashtra.
The situation has improved a bit after formation of NOTTO in 2014. The body is the nodal networking agency which coordinates procurement, allocation, and distribution of organs in the country. However, there is still a long way to go. While in its first year, it coordinated 10 organ transplants, it increased to 78 in 2016.
The country sees around 1.3 lakh road accident deaths each year, of these 70 per cent are declared brain dead, which are potential organ donors. But most of them go waste due to various reasons ranging from unwilling families, religious beliefs and sometimes police intervention.
“There are myths and misconceptions among general public regarding organ donation. Out of every 100 cases we counsel (counselling families of brain dead patients), we receive success in only five of them. Most families do not give consent. Some have religious superstitions like in the next birth they won’t get the organ they donate,” said an official from NOTTO.
There is a need for a massive awareness campaigns and that at the moment is missing, believes Sunayana Singh, CEO, Organ India, an initiative by Parashar Foundation, a Delhi-based NGO....