In the recent past, there has been an increase in the numbers of people pledging their organs. However, there is a need to make a concerted effort in this regard so that more members of the society can be encouraged to take this important and noble step. Read all about how to donate your organs here.
The government on its part is also doing its bit and has introduced a new provision in the driving licence application, which allows an applicant to pledge his/her organs.
This move has already seen some success, and according to sources in the Times of India, around 5 lakh of the 9 crore new licence holders have pledged to donate their organs. While this change in the application form has been in effect from April 1, local advocacy groups had started reaching out to people way before that.
Gift Your Organ Foundation is the NGO that has been pursuing the change in the driving licence application format, and Priyanka Shylendra, its CEO, hopes that this provision will bring in more awareness.
The foundation carried out an awareness drive from 2012 to 2015, at 9 RTO’s in Bengaluru. They reached out to approximately 1.72 lakh people, and 62,000 ended up pledging their organs. They reached out to nearly 15,000 people at a similar drive held in 2013 at a Mumbai RTO.
Shylendra’s NGO, as well as the other organisations working in this area, have also been pushing for the seamless transfer of organs from accident victims to hospitals and the government has been working with private firms to facilitate the same.
According to Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is keen to work with the Centre in an initiative to harvest the organs of road accident victims and facilitate emergency services using helicopters. He also mentioned that the government is developing around 750 roadside amenities, which will be equipped with helipads and other facilities.
Organ donation needs awareness in India. There is less than one donor in a million in India, and since 2005, 3 million deaths due to the non-availability of organs have been recorded.
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The initiative by the government for new licence holders is a welcome move and should help achieve two important objectives—increase the number of donors, and more importantly, increase the awareness around donation.