There used to be, and there still is a common perception that no one can give or take life other than the divine. And most of us mortals feel absolute helpless in times of adversities like the life threatening ailments or death of our dear ones. While many go out of hope in such situations, there are certain reasons to hold on. Organ donation is one such ray of hope. Though the concept as such has took a long to penetrate the minds of Indians, advancements in medical technology and success stories of organ transplantation are gradually changing the preconceived notions.
In the current days, it is heartening to see that more and more people coming forward to pledge the donation. Not only those who are declared brain dead, but healthy living ones are also capable of giving their body parts for lighting life in another individual. While most of the organs of a brain dead patient can be harvested for replacement, a living person can donate his or her kidney and liver, provided the recipient’s body accept it. In India, the procedures for cadaver donation are carried out as per the Transplantation of Human Organs Act of 1994.
As far as India is concerned, there is a need of about 2 lakh kidneys and fifty thousand kidneys per year. Even if the relatives of deceased patients agree for donation, much of this scarcity can be reduced. What is badly needed is the conviction and commitment to come forward for the cause. It is certain that one may come across numerous myths like; doctors will go careless if they know the patient has already pledged for donation, only people with higher status can access the facility, certain illness can make the body unfit for harvesting etc. All these myths and apprehensions can be cleared with proper awareness from the part of government, medical professionals and various NGOs. It is high time that we make ourselves sensitive towards this issue and save the lives of our fellow beings.