Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], August 13 (ANI): Karnataka Health Minister K Sudhakar on Friday urged people to take a pledge for organ donation on the occasion of World Organ Donation Day.
"During this Azadi Ki Amrit Mahotsav, pledge to donate your organs which could be "Amrit" for someone's life," Sudhakar said while addressing a press conference.
The press conference was held to brief about the awareness program where a human chain will be formed from Bengaluru's Mekhri Circle to Freedom Park on Saturday to mark World Organ Donation Day.
He said that the human chain will consist of over 5000 which would include students, youth and ASHA workers to express cooperation amongst people.
In addition to this, several belonging to the field of health and medicine will stand in the shape of kidneys at Tripuravasini for 15 minutes (from 8 am to 8:15 am) to raise awareness, the Health Minister added.
"Also, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai will be felicitating family members who donated the organs of their loved ones who unfortunately had been declared brain dead, at an event that will be held in Vidhana Soudha. Additionally, those who were the recipients of the organs will also share their thoughts on the occasion. CM Bommai will also take an organ donation pledge. I too along with other officials will also take a pledge along with CM Bommai at the event," Minister Sudhakar added.
The Health Minister recalled Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Mann Ki Baat address, in which he appealed to people to donate organs.
"We call blood donation a great donation. I would like to go one step ahead and say organ donation is the superior donation. Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi also has appealed to citizens of India during one of his Mann Ki Baat radio programmes," he said.
Sudhakar said that Karnataka has State Organ and Tissue Transplant Organization (SOTTO) and there is an option to take the pledge online.
"Over 11,000 people have already taken the pledge online. Karnataka should become a role model in this. A total of 4354 people have registered for a Kidney transplant in Karnataka. Similarly, 1141 people have registered for a liver transplant and 91 people have applied for a heart transplant. The recipient will be decided on the basis of the match and further on a first come first serve basis within the match," the Minister said.
He said that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of donations had gone down.
"There is a need for three-four lakh Kidney donations. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of donations had gone down. There were only two places for organ donation in the entire, one at Bowring and the other at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS).
Sudhakar said that the Karnataka government took measures to open one such facility at each medical college in Karnataka and currently the number has grown to 18.
"It is heartening to see so many come forward to pledge themselves for organ donation. Even our beloved Puneeth Rajkumar's eye donation has helped restore vision to 5 people. Organs of Actor Sanchari Vijay have helped to save five people," Sudhakar said.
He said that the government is also contemplating placing a price cap for organ donation in a private hospitals to make it more affordable.
"To hasten the process of donation, harvest, transportation and transplant of organs, an air ambulance facility is being planned and will be available shortly. In Victoria Hospital's gastroenterology unit an organ harvest facility has been created with very low expenditure under the Ayushmaan Bharat scheme. We are also contemplating placing a price cap for organ donation in private hospitals to make it more affordable," added Minister Sudhakar. (ANI)