Organ Shortage,Organ Donation and Laws in India

  Aug 08, 2023

Organ Shortage,Organ Donation and Laws in India

1.What is the current situation of organ shortage in India?

There is a significant shortage of organs for transplant in India, with over three lakh patients waiting for organ transplants.

2.How has the number of organ donors changed over the years?

Between 2014 and 2022, the number of donors (including cadavers) increased from 6,916 to 16,041.

3.Why is there a need to improve the cadaver donation rate?

Cadaver donations are essential to meet the growing demand for organs. Currently, living donors comprise 85% of all donors, and an increased cadaver donation rate can bridge the gap between demand and supply.

4.What are the challenges in deceased organ donations in India?

India's poor record in cadaver donations is evident from the low numbers of kidney, liver, and heart transplants in the deceased category compared to living donor transplants.

5.How urgent is the need for kidney transplants in India?

The annual need for kidney transplants in India is approximately 2,00,000, but only around 10,000 transplants are performed each year, resulting in a significant gap between demand and supply.

6.What is the significance of cadaver donors in meeting the demand for organs?

Cadaver donors can significantly contribute to meeting the demand for organs, especially since many families lack suitable living donors.

7.How can greater awareness and education help in promoting organ donations?

By raising awareness and educating medical staff, especially those in intensive care units, about brain death and the importance of organ donation, more families may come forward to donate.

8.How many lives can be saved by one cadaver donor?

One cadaver donor can save up to eight lives, while two donated kidneys can free two patients from dialysis treatment.

9.Which regions in India have shown higher rates of organ donations?

Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, and Maharashtra have reported the most significant number of deceased organ donors.

10.What is the overall message?

There is a critical need to improve organ donation rates, especially cadaver donations, in India to save more lives and bridge the gap between demand and supply for organ transplants. Greater awareness and education among medical professionals and the public are vital in achieving this goal.

Organ donation laws in India

Organ donation laws in India are governed by the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Act (THOTA), which was enacted in 1994 and later amended in 2011. The law regulates the removal, storage, and transplantation of human organs and tissues and aims to prevent illegal organ trade and promote ethical practices in organ donation.

Key points of the organ donation law in India:

• Types of Donors: The law distinguishes between living donors and deceased (cadaver) donors.
• Living Donors: A living person can donate organs such as kidneys, portions of the liver, and a part of the pancreas to a family member or a close relative with the approval of a competent authority.
• Deceased Donors: Organ donation from deceased persons is allowed under certain conditions, and consent from the deceased's family is required. The law sets guidelines for brain death certification and the procedure for obtaining consent.
• Authorized Hospitals: Only hospitals authorized by the government can perform organ transplantation procedures.
• National and State Registries: The law provides for the establishment of a national registry and state registries to maintain records of donors and recipients.
• Punishments: The law imposes severe penalties, including imprisonment and fines, for illegal organ trade and other violations.
Overall, the organ donation law in India seeks to encourage ethical organ donation practices, protect the interests of donors and recipients, and ensure transparency in organ transplantation procedures.


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