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Transplants – Help the Poor Foundation joins hands with MOHAN Foundation to boost organ donation movement in India

Our Bureau, Mumbai
Thursday, December 7, 2017, 16:10 Hrs  [IST]

Transplants – Help the Poor Foundation, the Mumbai-based NGO, that has been working towards assisting the poor in having equal access to organ transplantation announced its association with Multi Organ Harvesting Aid Network (MOHAN) Foundation, the pioneering organisation raising awareness for cadaver organ donation in India. The joint initiative has been launched with an endeavour to promote and counsel families on altruistic deceased organ donation.

Under the association, hospitals in Navi Mumbai and Mumbai cities have been identified for the launch. To kick-start the partnership, the Foundation is working towards associating with the Lokmanya Tilak Sion Hospital, Mumbai.  

As a part of the procedure, the Foundation will place their transplants coordinators at the Sion Hospital. The counsellor(s) will be the facilitators in cadaver organ donation and transplant cases. The person will be in charge of counselling families of patients who are admitted to the ICU and have been identified as brain dead – with head injury, intracranial haemorrhage, stroke or brain cancer.

They are also trained to counsel recipients and their families, as well as sensitize and train staff of the hospital about organ donation and brain death. The most important part of their role would be to work with the community where the hospital is situated to create awareness about organ donation – the neighbourhood, educational institutes, other hospitals and other such places where mass crowds can be tapped.

Speaking about the initiative, Prof (Dr) Darius Mirza, Head Transplant Surgery Apollo Navi Mumbai and Co-founder, Transplants: Help the Poor Foundation) said, “MOHAN and us, in our individual capacities, have been working toward creating awareness about the immense benefits of organ donation and facilitating it. Joining hands to create an ecosystem that will benefit the initiative seemed a natural progression to our efforts. Through the new association, we are hopeful we will be able to reduce the immense gap between the demand and availability of donated organs for transplants.”

“While people may not have thought of organ donation during their lifetime, this is an opportunity for families to witness the legacy of their loved ones live on after they are gone. In our experience, we have observed that most families are very open to the idea of organ donation once they have accepted the eventuality. The presence of our counsellor will provide the much-needed emotional panacea that donating and receiving need in such circumstances.”

Also, speaking on this association, Dr Sunil Shroff, founder MOHAN Foundation said, “We are happy to associate with Transplants: Help the Poor Foundation. Together, we aim to establish an eco-system which will benefit the needy.”

India has, historically, had a very low rate of organ donation. Although this number has improved over the past three-four years, the country still has a long way to go. As per past reports, more than 30,000 individuals are in need of liver transplants in the country. However, less than 5% of these receive a liver before it is too late, with over 80% receiving a liver from a living related donor.

The need for transplant kidneys stands at two lakh annually, of which only around 8,000 manage to receive a transplant, with almost 90 percent receiving a living donor transplant. For patients waiting for a heart or lung transplant, the chances of finding an organ is very small, at around 5 percent or even less.


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