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Organ donations, transplants pick up pace in govt. hospitals

Human Organ Transplantation

Human Organ Transplantation   | Photo Credit: Getty Images

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Tissue and cornea donations also catching on

After a slow start, organ donations and transplants picked up pace in a few government hospitals during the last two to three months of 2019. Tissue donations, particularly skin, corneas and bones, after cardiac deaths were improving slowly at these hospitals.

The first half of 2019 saw 13 donors in four government hospitals. By the end of the year, the government sector had a total of 22 donors and 77 organs when compared to 27 donors and 74 organs in 2018. The fag end of the year broke the lull in organ donations and transplants in the government hospitals, officials of the Health Department said.

In November, the Health department held a meeting with deans of all government medical college hospitals to take steps to improve the deceased donor programme and conduct more organ transplants to benefit the poor patients, an official said.

Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital (RGGGH) that had five donations till July ended the year with a total of 10 donors; five donations happening in the last three months. The Government Stanley Medical College Hospital had a nine donors.

Officials of the Transplant Authority of Tamil Nadu said tissue donations after cardiac arrests was picking up in a number of government hospitals such as Government Kilpauk Medical College (KMC) Hospital. In tissue donations after cardiac arrests, 257 donors donated 514 corneas and 56 donors donated skin from January to December 2019.

P. Vasanthamani, dean of KMC, said tissue donations, particularly skin, was gaining pace at the hospital especially in the last five months. From 20 donations in 2018, KMC registered 29 donations last year of which nine were in November and December, she said.

“We have a biomaterial centre since 2018. We want to improve tissue donations by creating awareness among people. In cases of natural deaths, like donating corneas, skin too can be donated. Skin is harvested only from the thighs and there is no disfigurement,” she said.

RGGGH has kick-started the new year with a heart transplant a few days ago. R. Jayanthi, dean, said, the institution continues to motivate families and promote organ donations. In a bid to reach out to public, the hospital had a organ-donation themed Christmas tree, she said.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 4:02:36 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/organ-donations-transplants-pick-up-pace-in-govt-hospitals/article30538815.ece

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