International conference on Organ Transplantation gets underway


International conference for coordinating and handling Organ donation and transplantation that kick-started from Friday, August 21, will look into the various aspects of organ transplantation.

The three day meet, attended online by more than 3000 delegates from India and abroad, is organized by Society for Heart failure and Transplantation (SfHFT).

The conference brings together International Experts and the apex body of Health Ministry on Organ transplantation, the National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation (NOTTO), and its Regional arms ROTTOs and SOTTOs to enable more donations, better allocation methods and transportation.

Inaugurating the Conference, NOTTO director Dr. Vasanthi Ramesh said that India, despite having the largest population, has very less public participation in organ donation. The ratio is still less than one in ten lakh population. Coordinated efforts of health sector and best clinical protocols are needed to streamline organ donation and transplantation, she said.

“A brain dead person can save or improve the life of roughly 40 persons.  Better action plan is required to educate, create awareness and instill a sense of duty on general public. We also need more licensed transplant-ready hospitals, more hospitals with infrastructure to retrieve organs and standard framework, protocol and guidelines for brain death certification and organ donation,” she said.

Dr Vasanthi Ramesh also explained the steps which have been taken to train medical experts, especially Intensivists and Anesthesia Experts for coordinating organ transplantation.

Explaining the major concerns in heart transplanation, Organizing Chairman Dr, Jose Chacko Periappuram, said that cadaveric organ donation has gained momentum  when compared to population and higher prevalence of end-stage heart failures. However, he said that only a miniscule percentage gets the organ for transplant before time runs out.  “We need proactive donation and transplant programmes,” he said.

Cardiothorasic and Transplant Surgeon from Sydney Dr. Kumud Dhital, SfHFT president Dr. V Nandakumar, SfHFT secretary Dr. Jabir Abdullakutty, Dr.Rony Mathew, Dr. Julius Punnen and Dr Ajithkumar spoke in the inaugural session.

Scientific Sessions:

The conference on its first day discussed both the exciting aspects and confusions in Indian cadaveric organ transplantation programme. Spanish Heart Transplantation Programme director Dr Alicia Perez Blanco led the talk on Spanish model to increase organ donation.  Dr. V Nandakumar spoke on the need of improved medical insurance and state mass insurance schemes to address the cost factor in heart and other organ transplants.

Dr. Jabir Abdullakutty said that the meet would also discuss the Logistics, Data Collection, Follow up Protocols and the economics of Cadaveric Organ Donation. ‘Panel discussions on legislations and models of Organ Donation and Transplantation followed in various countries is another highlight of the event,’ Dr. Jabir said.

Dr. Kumud Dhital, Australia, Dr. Mandeep Mehra, USA, Dr. Jayan Parameswar, UK, Dr, Riyad Tarazi, Kuwait, Dr. Alicia Perez Blanco, Spain, Dr. Maria Paula Gomez, Spain, Dr. Julie Whitney, UK, are among the prominent international faculty addressing the conference.


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