New Delhi: The Health Ministry has decided not to give awards for ‘best transplant coordinator’ and ‘best hospital for work in the sector of organ transplant’ categories as none of the hospitals in the country uploaded details of their waiting lists and transplant data on the NOTTO website. Uploading details of waiting lists, transplant data and post-transplant follow up information was stipulated as an eligibility criteria for the awards.
The NOTTO has been giving awards under these categories for the last two years to encourage hospitals to perform the transplant work in a legal and transparent manner, said Dr Vasanthi Ramesh, the director of NOTTO (National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation).
“But despite our repeated requests to the respective states to ask hospitals to upload details of waiting lists and transplant and post transplant follow up data on the national registry maintained by the NOTTO, none of them have done so,” Ramesh said.
Elaborating on the procedure, the NOTTO director said that when a person requires an organ transplant, his or her name is enrolled in the waiting list by the hospital.
“We still don’t have the exact figure of patients who require organ transplant at national level as some private hospitals do not communicate their waiting lists to the NOTTO. We have been consistently writing to the states seeking details of persons who need transplants as we are in the process of creating a National Registry,” She said.
Every hospital having a waiting list is supposed to get their data added to the centralised website of NOTTO, the country’s apex organ donation agency.
Waiting lists in hospitals for kidney transplants are the longest in the country, followed by those requiring liver transplants.
There are three types of donors – a living related donor, an unrelated living donor and SWAP donors – besides cadaveric donations.
Under the living related donor category, only immediate blood relations like parents, siblings, children, grandparents and grandchildren can donate their organs. Spouse is also accepted as a living donor in the category.
Under the unrelated living donors, anybody can donate only for the reason of affection and attachment towards the recipient.
Such donations are first permitted by a hospital committee and then by a state appointed committee to ensure that the donation is non-commercial. It is this category which gets misused and opens doors for trading of organs as it gives hospitals power to decide on the donor.
In cases where the living near-relative donor is incompatible with the recipient, provision for swapping of donors between two such pairs exists.