New Delhi: Union minister of health and family welfare Jagat Prakash Nadda said organ donation should become a social movement in the country .
Nadda was speaking at a World Organ Donation Day event organised by Border Security Force (BSF) in collaboration with National Organ & Tissue Transplantation Organisation (NOTTO) at a BSF Officers’ Mess in Nizamuddin on Saturday.
Over 1,500 personnel from the BSF have volunteered to register themselves for organ donation. KK Sharma, director general of BSF, said “Organ donation can bring about immortality, when an organ moves from one body to another, the person receiving it gets a new lease of life.There can be no greater donation than this.” Urging people to come forward and donate organs, Nadda said that the country is in dire need of donors. In the past year, 30,000 donors were required for liver transplant, but NOTTO could provide only 1,500 donors.
Similarly for one lakh patients requiring cornea transplant, the organisation could find 25,000 donors.Heart transplantation was the worst in numbers; NOTTO could provide just 100 donors as against the required 50,000.
Regarding the government’s initiative, Nadda said that the ministry is working very hard to improve the infrastructure for organ transplantation.
“Our retrieval system is getting stronger day by day ,a transplant can now happen within a matter of hours,” said the minister.
“A 24×7 call centre with toll free helpline number 1800114770 -has been established for providing information on organ donation and coordinating matters related to retrieval and allocation of organs recovered from cadaver donors,” added Nadda. The government has also started a website where users can register and pledge to be an organ donor. Nadda spoke about the misconceptions in the Indian society about organ donation and said that there was need for mo re awareness.
NOTTO has set up regional centres in major cities for transplanting organs without delay . Proper guidelines for donation and receiving of organs have been uploaded on public domain.
“The gap between the donor and the receiver needs to reduce. Doctors need to undergo training to facilitate quick transition of an organ from one body to another,” said Prof Vimal Bhandari, director of NOTTO.
“NOTTO gives Rs50,000 to private facilities to help the poor strata who do not have funds to pay for an organ transplant,” added Bhandari.
Assistant Sub-Inspector VK Singh felt proud on being an organ donor. “I have pledged my life to the service of this nation, and by becoming an organ donor, I will continue to do so even after my death,” added Singh.
This article first appeared in The Times of India, Delhi Edition issue dated 14.08.2016