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Indian minister for scientific collection of donated organs

Aug 08, 2014

India’s Health Minister said that Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital will house the first National Organ &Tissue Transplantation Organisation (NOTTO).

New Delhi: The Indian Health Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, announced a fresh government initiative to ensure the scientific collection of organs and tissues from donors and its further distribution to patients-in –need at minimum cost.

The Indian minister said that Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi will house the first National Organ &Tissue Transplantation Organisation (NOTTO) and will maintain computerized networks with 24 identified transplant and organ retrieval centres in Delhi. This will take 18 months in its completion.

Dr Harsh Vardhan said, “I wish to see a body pledging revolution in India. But before that, I will put in place a state-of-art interface system between organ and recipients. At present only a handful of private hospitals are controlling information on organ availability, which is making costs prohibitive for the common man.

Soon public institutions will make possible for speedy and effective distribution of kidneys, hearts, lungs, bones, tissues, cornea, skin and cells at token cost to those who can pay and free to the poor.”

The Health Minister added that he would consult the state governments at the next meeting of the Central Council of Health on setting up NOTTO-like institutions in all state capitals. The proposed Universal Health Assurance Plan which Prime Minister Narendra Modi has articulated will have an organ donation component as well, he stated.

The Health Minister said that today, organ donation from the brain dead to patients-in-need is facilitated by law but having progressive laws is not enough. The rate of organ donation in India is only 0.16 per 1 million population, compared to 40 in Spain and 35 in the United States, he said.

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