We all enjoy giving gifts to make our loved ones happy. But have you ever wondered how it might feel to offer a gift to someone you don’t know? What if that gift could help save a life? No present can ever be as important as saving someone’s life and you can accomplish this by donating an organ. There are over 160,000 patients that require transplants every year. We can help them, by spreading awareness about Organ Donation Day and bursting myths associated with donating organs that stop individuals from saving lives.
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Organ Donation Day
Every year on August 13, World Organ Donation Day is commemorated to promote awareness about the necessity of organ donation and to encourage people to donate organs after death. Donating an organ is extremely valuable because it is both a gift and a life-saving act. One organ donor can save up to eight lives. So, this year, let’s encourage ordinary people to take extraordinary actions.
“Heaven will accept you even without your organs! Donate them!”
Importance of Organ Donation Day
Millions of people are affected by organ failure in their lives. Many people in need of transplants die because of the scarcity and fear around the idea of organ donation. The significant shortage of organs means people often spend their lives in pain and waiting for transplants that could add value to their lives. All persons with end-stage organ failure could be transplanted if we all donated our organs after death or while living.
Unfortunately, many patients are unaware that they can donate their organs. The lack of information around how to donate organs after one’s death and misconception of violation around organ donation stops millions of families from donating. Thus, raising public awareness of organ donation is critical and Organ Donation Day aims to create awareness amongst common people on how to safely donate organs.
“A second chance is in your hands.”
The Organ Donation Process
Organ donation is a process in which people agree to give a healthy organ or tissue to a person who has a failing or damaged organ, and the organ is then transplanted. Donations can be made by both living and deceased people. A deceased person can give both kidneys, both lungs, both hearts, both livers, both intestines, both pancreas, and tissues such as heart valves, cornea, skin, bone/cartilage, and blood vessels, whereas a living person can only donate one kidney, one portion of the liver, and one part of the pancreas.
This is done following the Transplant Human Organ Act (THOA) of 1994, which covers all medico-legal aspects of organ/tissue transplantation and makes the buying and sale of organs illegal.
“Across the nation, spread word for organ donation.”
Who can be an Organ Donor?
Organ Donation Day is about spreading awareness. Organ and tissue donation is possible for anyone, regardless of age, race, or gender. If the individual is under the age of 18, parental or legal guardian approval is required.
List of Organs that can be Donated
Here is a list of organs that can be donated to save lives. A single individual can save up to 8 lives by pledging to this service:
- Small Intestine
- Skin tissues
- Bone tissues
- Heart valves
“It takes a heart to make a difference, make it count.”
India has only 3% Organ Donors
According to AIIMS data released in 2019-202, 1.5-2 lakh people require kidney transplants each year, however only about 8,000 (4%) patients obtain them. Similarly, about 80,000 people require liver transplants each year, but only 1,800 of them are carried out. Every year, about 1 lakh individuals require corneal or eye transplants, but only about half of them are successful. Even among cardiac patients, only approximately 200 of the 10,000 who need a heart transplant match with a potential donor.
The lack of public understanding about the donation process is one of the key causes of this scarcity. While various NGOs and government agencies are working to raise awareness about this, many people are unaware and misguided.
“You can be a living donor too!”
How to Donate an Organ?
According to the information posted on the AIIMS official website, there are two ways to donate organs:
1. Committing to organ donation while a person is still living
2. Committing to organ donation with the family’s consent after death
Here are some basic steps to follow if you want to become a donor:
A person can pledge for organ donation at any time during their life by filling out a donor form, which can be received from ORBO either in person or by mail:
Step 1: Get the donor form from the official website.
Step 2: Fill out the “Organ/Body Donation” form after downloading it.
Step 3: On the donor form, you’ll need two witnesses’ signatures, one of whom must be a close family.
Step 4: If your request is approved, you will receive a “Donor Card” with a registration number.
Step 5: If you decide to become a donor, you must inform your loved ones.
Another way is to make a valuable donation
The hospital also accepts unregistered donations. If a person dies without registering, his or her organs can be donated by the person’s relatives. The sole requirement for this contribution is that they sign a consent form, which is provided at the time. The body of the deceased is respectfully returned to the family.
“Be the reason behind someone’s hope.”
Institutes to Register for Organ Donation
On Organ Donation Day, if you want to become a donor, you can do so by registering on the following websites:
- National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organization (NOTTO)
The National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organization (NOTTO) is a national organisation under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s Directorate General of Health Services.
- Regional Organ and Tissue Transplant Organizations (ROTTO)
Regional Organ and Tissue Transplant Organizations are listed below located in different areas like Govt. Multispecialty Hospital, Omandurar, Chennai (Tamil Nadu), Institute of PG Medical Education and Research, Kolkata (West Bengal), Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai (Maharashtra), PGIMER Chandigarh(UT of Chandigarh) and Guwahati Medical College (Assam)
“Donate your organs, pass on the gift of life.”
Some Facts about Organ Donation
Let’s look at some facts about organ donation on this Organ Donation Day:
- Organ donation is possible for anyone of any age, caste, religion, or group.
- Donating organs can be done at any age. Organ donation is based on strict medical standards rather than age.
- Tissues like the cornea, heart valves, skin, and bone can be donated after natural death, but essential organs like the heart, liver, kidneys, intestines, lungs, and pancreas can only be donated after “brain dead.”
- Organs such as the heart, pancreas, liver, kidneys, and lungs can be transplanted to patients whose organs are failing, allowing many of them to return to a normal life.
- To be a donor, anyone under the age of 18 must obtain the permission of a parent or guardian.
Donating an organ is a noble and altruistic act. By donating, you are giving another person a few years of life and happiness to them and their family and loved ones. Anyone can volunteer to be an organ donor by filling out an authorized organ and tissue donation form. This Organ Donation Day, try to register yourself as a donor and motivate others to help spread awareness about this divine gesture. We hope we answered all your doubts about Organ Donation Day! For more informative blogs, follow Leverage Edu on Facebook and Youtube,