A motorcycle rally to promote organ donation awareness was flagged off on Wednesday from Loyola College, Chennai, South India. The event was organised by the Multi Organ Harvesting Aid Network (MOHAN) Foundation, a national Non-Government Organization that promotes deceased Organ Donation Program in India. The foundation has enabled 400 of the 1,400 cadaver organ transplants in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh since 2000. Speaking on the occasion, Managing Trustee of MOHAN Foundation Dr.Sunil Shroff said, “the spurt in cadaver organ donation activity in the State has inspired volunteers of the foundation to undertake the motorcycle rally that would cover 2,000 kms covering 10 places.”
Indicating that one organ donor could save over nine lives, Dr. Shroff added that the first successful kidney transplant and multi-organ transplant in India was done in Tamil Nadu and that the State stood ahead of others in eye donation.
Flagging off the motorcycle rally, Chennai Commissioner of Police T. Rajendran said, “Police handle about 30,000 bodies, mostly of suicide and road accident victims, every year. By creating a network of police and doctors, we can make Tamil Nadu the largest contributor of cadaver organs. We are ready to help not only by sensitising the people but also in assisting organ transportation.” He assured that Tamil Nadu Police would provide a Green Corridor—a non stop thoroughfare to facilitate speedy transport of vital organs to any part of the state.
J. Amalorpavanathan, transplant coordinator, Cadaver Transplant Programme, Tamil Nadu, said 120 cadaver organ donations were recorded last year. Illegal or commercial organ transplants could be rooted out if the number of cadaver organ donations increased to at least 300 a year. “If 500 organ donations can be achieved per year, even genuine cases (like a parent donating to son or daughter) can be avoided,” he added.
Loyola College Principal Rev. A. Albert Muthumalai also spoke on the need to create awareness on organ donation. Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) M. Shakeel Akhter and Joint Commissioner of Police (Central) V.A. Ravikumar were present on the occasion.
Since its inception in 1997 MOHAN Foundation continues to distribute organ donor cards in various Indian languages, hold patient support group meetings, train transplant coordinators, counsel organ donor families and publish a quarterly newsletter called the Indian Transplant Newsletter.