In a welcome development, the number of organ donors in India has increased from 9,000 to 15 lakh in the last two years, Times News Network has reported.
This is especially good for India which has just 0.8 donors per million population, among the lowest in the world. Spain and the United States, on the other hand, have 36 and 26 organ donors per million respectively.
“In merely two years, the number of Indians who have pledged organs has jumped from 9,000 to 15 lakh today,” said Dr Vimal Bhandari, director of the National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation (NOTTO).
While pledging one’s organs is in no way legally binding, it is one of the most effective tools of spreading awareness about the issue. Most people in India either aren’t aware of cadaver donation or are apprehensive about the issue.
“Pledging not just makes one aware, but also provides a window for individuals to discuss it with loved ones,” Bhandari added.
There’s a huge demand supply gap in the human organs for transplantations in the country with many deaths occurring due to the shortage. In India, more than 2 lakh kidneys, 30,000 livers and 50,000 hearts are required annually while the supply for the organs stands abysmally low at just 6,000 kidneys, 1,500 livers and 15 hearts.
The new pledges hence represent a welcome change. Of the lakhs, over 70,000 of the pledges are by young jawans of the Border Security Force (BSF) and other security forces. Others have come from educational institutions NOTTO approached through its network of 60 NGOs.
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