Health Watch
  • We all have the power to save lives through organ donation
  • Most of the organs are removed only after the patient is declared clinically dead or brain dead
  • There is a worldwide shortage of organs and there is a huge gap between demand and supply of organs

'Don't take your organs to heaven, for heaven knows we need them here'

Organ Donation Day is celebrated on 13th August every year in India and is the last day of the organ donation week that starts on the 6th of August. MOHAN Foundation, a pioneering NGO in this field started the organ donation week and organ donation day about 10 years ago and this tradition continues in India. This week has become synonymous with the week of giving, a week of celebration of life itself through the noble act of donation.

During this period the value of 'Organ Donation' and how organ transplants can save lives is explained through various activities like seminars and camps. Popular newspaper and television channel also have promoted the cause in association with corporate hospitals.
Organ Donation Day 2016 - Donate Organs & Extend Our Own Life
Organ Donation Day 2016 - Donate Organs & Extend Our Own Life

Organ transplantation can be a life saving surgery to people who die due to failure of one major organ of the body. This means that when an organ donor donates organs, he or she will actually donate life.

One organ donor can save 8 lives and enhance many more lives through organ donation and tissues donation.

Organ Donation Day is also an occasion to honor medical researchers who have worked tirelessly not only to transplant organs, but also to help the body accept the newly replaced organ with immunosuppressive drugs and various ways to preserve the organs that would be removed from the body.

Objectives of Organ Donation Day:
  • To create awareness about the need for organ donation
  • To create awareness about the procedure of registration for organ donation
  • To spread the message of organ donation across the country
  • To raise above the inhibitions and religious beliefs and stress the importance of donating organs to save lives
  • To honor the organ donors
The various organs and tissues that can be donated include -
  • Heart
  • Liver
  • Pancreas
  • Small intestine
  • Lungs
  • Kidneys
  • Heart valves
  • Cornea (eye)
  • Skin tissues
  • Bone tissues and Bone marrow
  • Veins
Kidney donation can be done by a living person as we have two kidneys and the popular adage is 'one to spare and the other to care.'

Living person can also donate part of their liver but this is a risk prone surgery. Liver has the ability to regenerate to its normal size after donation.

However, heart donation is only possible after brain death. After brain death all the organs and tissues can be donated and in India this is an accepted form of death as defined by the law.

Due to high number of road traffic accidents deaths, brain death is a common form of death but these are seldom identified and certified. This leads to loss of organs. MOHAN Foundation has been working in the field from 1997 to spread awareness about this form of death and the value of organ donation. So far they have counselled over 1,200 families and this has resulted in almost 4,500 organs and tissues.       

Organ & Tissue Donation Statistics from India

Corneal donation is the most common tissue donation and kidney the most common organ donation in India. Government law on "The Transplantation of Human Organs Act" in 1994 has curbed illegal organ transplantation and accepted brain death as form of death to make more organs available. Since 2012 the organ donation after brain death has gone up three times from 196 donations to 570 donations in 2015.

Deceased organ donation statistics - 2015

Tamil Nadu has been a leader in the field of both corneal and deceased donation rate and numbers in the country.

Online organ sharing registry for deceased donation and transplantation is available in Tamil Nadu and Kerala. This can be used by people all over India and ensures fair use of donated organs and allotment according to the priority of the recipients.

Oct 2008 to Jun 30, 2016
Donors From Tamil Nadu 823
Heart 225
Lung 120
Liver 772
Kidney 1501
Pancreas 9
Small Bowel 2
Total Major organs 2629
Heart Valve 676
Cornea 1254
Skin 40
Blood Vessels 2
Total Organs 4601
(Source -
Some of the NGO's and organizations where one can contact regarding organ donation are:
  • MOHAN Foundation
  • Gift A Life
  • Dadhichi Mission
  • Gift Your Organ Foundation
  • Shatayu
Organ Donor Card ensures the consent of the donor of his or her organs after death. This facility is provided by MOHAN Foundation to create awareness and get pledge for organ donation.

Organ Donation - Myths & Facts

Myth: My religion does not permit organ donation.

Fact: All religions support the concept of saving life and consider it as a noble act. Organ donation is like any other generous offering done at the place of worship.

Myth: My family has to take care of payments to remove my organs for donation.

Fact: Once death occurs, expenses for the organ donation are taken care of by the organization and the donor's family will not be charged.

Myth: I have a serious medical illness. Will my organs cause problems to the recipient?

Fact: The team that coordinates the donation will consider the medical history of the donor and determine the suitability of the donated organ.

Myth: I am too young for organ donation.

Fact: Children under 18 years of age require the permission of their parents or legal guardians to authorize the consent. Child recipients require smaller organs than adults.

Myth: I am too old for organ donation.

Fact: Organ donation does not have any age limit. People as old as 90 years can donate many of their organs.

Myth: If I donate most of my organs, my body will be mutilated and not returned properly to my family.

Fact: Organs that are donated are removed with minimal possible surgical procedures. Adequate sutures and clothing will be provided to make normal funeral arrangements.

Lebanese poet Khalil Gibran said ~

'..You give but little when you give of your wealth

You truly give when you give of yourself'

So give a bit of yourself and save lives and in the process extend your life through this noble act of organ donation.

Go online today and pick up your donor card by using this link -

References :
  4. Organ donation - (
Source: Medindia

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