Karnataka

Three heart transplants in 18 days, a special feat for KLE Hospital Belagavi

Staff of KLES Transplantation Wing ferried a kidney donated by a brain dead woman from Dharwad to the KLES Prabhakar Kore Hospital in Belagavi last month. A green corridor was created for the transport between Hubballi-Dharwad and Belagavi.  

Staff of KLES Transplantation Wing ferried a kidney donated by a brain dead woman from Dharwad to the KLES Prabhakar Kore Hospital in Belagavi last month. A green corridor was created for the transport between Hubballi-Dharwad and Belagavi.   | Photo Credit: BADIGER PK

Doctors at the KLE Society’s Dr Prabhakar Kore Hospital and Medical Research Centre have conducted three heart transplant surgeries in less than three weeks. “Our team of doctors headed by Richard Saldanha have performed three transplants in 18 days. This is a record of sorts in the state,’’ Prabhakar Kore, society chairman, said in a release.

The surgeries have saved the lives of three persons who were suffering from serious ailments.

“We have also facilitated several other organ transplants in Bengaluru and Dharwad, and saved the lives of patients suffering from kidney and liver diseases. I am happy that the KLE Society’s doctors and staff are involved in this noble deed. KLE Hospital has worked with doctors in Jayadeva Hospital and SDM Hospital in Dharwad,” he said.

A 20-year legacy

The society set up the hospital over 20 years ago with the aim of providing high quality healthcare to residents of Northern Karnataka at affordable prices.

“To achieve such success, a hospital needs massive medical infrastructure, highly-trained workforce, meticulous planning, post-transplant intensive care, teamwork and administrative support. We are glad that KLE society has provided all this to us,” Dr Saldanha, chief cardiac surgeon, said.

KLE staff coordinated with the police and other authorities to ensure timely transport of a heart harvested at SDM Dharwad. It was brought safely through a green corridor despite heavy rain and peak hours of the day. The organ reached Belagavi in 58 minutes.

Dr Kore thanked parents of Sahadev Gaonkar from Amte village, who volunteered to donate his organs. The hospital faced the challenging task of ferrying the organs from Vijay Ortho and Trauma Centre (VOTC) to the KLES Hospital in an ambulance using a ventilator.

“The recipients include a 25-year-old boy from Kolhapur, a 18-year-old boy from Gokak and a 48-year-old patient from Ranebennur in Haveri district,” Dr. Kore said.

All three had been waiting for organ donors for nearly two years. They were suffering from reduced heart functioning of around 25%. All of them have recovered post surgery. Two have been discharged and another is ready to leave the hospital,’’ said M V Jali, Medical Director and Chief Executive of the hospital. Dr Jali recalled the contribution of Ravi Patil, Director, VOTC.

Free-of-charge transplants for poor patients

Doctors and officers of the transplantation cell of the KLE hospital in Belagavi travel with the donated heart in an ambulance from Dharwad to Belagavi. file photo

Doctors and officers of the transplantation cell of the KLE hospital in Belagavi travel with the donated heart in an ambulance from Dharwad to Belagavi. file photo | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

According to Dr Kore, the cost of a transplant in KLE Hospital is just around ₹10 lakh against the ₹25 lakh charged by hospitals in the metro cities. They are charging such low fees keeping in mind the socio-economic conditions of people from northern Karnataka, southern Maharashtra, Goa and surrounding areas.

“We have also decided to carry out transplants free of charge for poor patients who claim benefits under the Ayushman Bharath-Arogya Karnataka scheme. Two of the total nine transplants conducted in KLE have been free of cost,” the chairman said. He has urged families to donate organs of their deceased relatives than burning them.

The transplant team included Mohan Gan, Kiran Kurkure, Abhisekh Prabhu and Parshwanath Patil, Sharangouda Patil, Anand Vagrali, Ahijeet Shitole, Dr Jabbar, Dr Shweta and Dr Darshan. Brain dead declarations were completed by neurologist Dr Kutub Makandar and Intensivist Ambarish Nerlikar.


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Printable version | Aug 1, 2022 5:32:32 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/three-heart-transplants-in-18-days-a-special-feat-for-kle-hospital-belagavi/article65707278.ece