Punarjani – Organ Donation Awareness Program
The Department of Solid Organ Transplant at the Amrita School of Medicine organized a one-day seminar on Organ Donation Awareness for school teachers in collaboration with the Higher Secondary National Service Scheme, Kerala.
The seminar on November 9, 2012 organized at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences was part of Punarjani, a program of the National Service Scheme to create awareness about organ donation in society.
About 100 volunteer-teachers of higher secondary schools from all parts of Kerala attended. It is expected that they will now help educated others regarding the need for organ donation.
The seminar was inaugurated by Sri. Tony Chammany, Mayor of Kochi.
Dr. Sudhindran S., Professor and Head of the Department of Solid Organ Transplant enlightened the gathering about the importance of cadaver (brain-dead donor) donations. Organs such as the liver, heart, kidneys, pancreas, small bowel and corneas could be retrieved from such donors.
“Increasing awareness about cadaver organ donations can result in precious lives being saved. If all of us agree to donate our organs after death, perhaps this will be more successful,” he emphasized.
Dr. V. N. Unni, Professor and Head of the Department of Nephrology at the Amrita School of Medicine elucidated the concept of brain death, the irreversible loss of all brain functions.
“Brain death certification is done after the patient satisfies certain irreversible criteria. The certification is carried out by a team of doctors appointed by the state, including a neurologist. The test is repeated after 6 hours before certification is given,” he shared.
Dr. Noble, the South Zone Coordinator of the State Government’s Cadaveric Organ Donation Initiative discussed government guidelines and initiatives in deceased donor organ donation.
“Mrithasanjeevani, the website of the state government, has the final word on organ sharing in the state. This ensures equity and transparency in organ sharing,” he informed.
Dr. Ismail Siyad, Professor and Head of the Department of Gastroenterology at the Amrita School of Medicine spoke about preventive aspects of liver disease.
Others who spoke included Dr. Puneet Dhar and Dr. Sudheer O.V. from the Amrita Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery; Fr. Davis Chiramel, Chairman, Kidney Federation of India; Mr. M. C. Roy, Project Head, SRVC and Mr. S. R. Nair, President, KMA, Kochi.
Ms. Chandrika, Program Officer of the NSS, explained the working plan of Punarjani. Print and visual media representatives and deceased organ-donor families and recipients spoke as well.
“It was the first session of its kind on organ donation awareness in the state and we could make note of so much information that can help eradicate the myths and the fears people have about organ donation,” stated Mr. Godwin, a volunteer-teacher from St. Alberts Higher Secondary School, Kochi, who attended.
November 21, 2012
School of Medicine, Kochi