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Global Outreach Organ Donation Programme

Overview

Organ donation in India has always been on a lower side and around 5 lakh people die every year in India due to unavailability of organs. Nearly 2.2 lakh people await kidney transplant, of which around 15,000 end up receiving a kidney. At a given point of time, about 1 lakh people die of liver diseases in India and only 1,000 get liver transplant. A cadaver or deceased donor can save up to 9 lives, but despite this organ donation is a neglected issue. Lack of knowledge, awareness, infrastructure are some of the reasons behind shortage of organ donation in India.

Here are the top 5 reasons why organ donation lags in India -

1. Lack Of Family Consent

2. Superstitions And Misconceptions

3. Lack Of Education And Awareness

4. Lack Of Brain Death Declaration

5. Lack Of Organ Transplant And Retrieval Centres

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), only about 0.01 percent in India donate their organs after death, while in Western countries around 70-80 percent of people pledge their organs.
Sandeep Kumar, Vice President of Donate Life, said, “In western countries like the US, the laws are not tough and India should follow some of their provisions. There is an urgent need to change the laws related with human organs transplant. They are very restrictive in nature.”
Current law in India allows organ donations from a ‘near relative’, which it defines as spouse, son, daughter, father, mother, brother or sister.
NGO’s have suggested states to prepare their own norms and rules on organ donation but only few of them have formulated the polices on this important issue, said Kumar.
“Gujarat wanted some inputs. We have recommended them to expand the definition of 'near relative' and include friends, brother-in-law, sister-in-law and other relatives,” said Kumar.
There are lakhs of people who need vital organs such as kidney, liver, eyes, but due to strict laws, people are reluctant to donate organs, he added.
"There is very low willingness among people to donate organs also because of lack of awareness. Cost of such transplants are also very high. It ranges between Rs 3 to Rs 3.5 lakh for kidney. Government should look at ways to reduce the cost," said Kumar.
Nearly 1.5 lakh people in India are on waiting list for kidney transplant, but only 3000 of them receive one. Around 90 percent of people in the waiting list die before getting an organ for transplant.