Beijing: China needs a law on organ transplant to regulate donation procedures and encourage people to become donors, lawmakers said on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress (NPC).
NPC deputy Li Bangliang, board chairman of East China Pharmaceutical Group Corporation, said a proper law is needed to guide the public how to donate their organs if they have such an intention.
"With a large number of organs in need, some people want to donate but often run into difficulties in the application process," said Li, adding a specific law should be enacted to standardise the application and transplant process."
China is faced with a huge gap between the patients who need functional organs and limited donations. About 1.5 million patients need organ transplant each year, but only 10,000 can find organs for the purpose, according to Ministry of Health statistics.
Most organs were donated by ordinary citizens upon their death after the voluntary signing of donation agreements. It is strictly prohibited in China for illegal organ transplant, said Huang Jiefu, China's vice health minister.
Experts believe that the concept of dead-brain declaration will greatly promote organ transplant.
However, the traditional Chinese view of "living till the last breath" has restrained living human organ supply, said NPC deputy Chen Haixiao, head of Taizhou Hospital in China's eastern Zhejiang province.
He suggested the law allow doctors to declare people brain dead so their organs can be used to save the lives of people.
The Ministry of Health in 2006 had drafted a set of regulations on human organ transplant to the State Council for revision and improvement.