By Karthik Ganesh:
The measure of one’s life is not its duration, but its donation. In the modern world it’s easy to make a buck but a lot tougher to make a difference in people’s life. The only true gift in this world is a portion of thyself and today it is possible to give someone this true gift under the ambit of organ donation.
Organ donation is the magnanimous act of strangers of giving up almost all of them to keep a part of you alive. It is a way of achieving immortality and in fact can be aptly classified as an elixir for life. It is indeed a privilege to be here on the planet to contribute your unique donation to humankind. Each face in the rainbow of colours that populate our world is precious and special.
Even though people are enlightened about the difference their organ donation can make in others’ lives, the ground reality story is alarming. Around 100 cadaver organ transplants are carried out in India every year which in any sane person’s view is abysmally low considering the fact that there are around 130,000 fatalities due to road accidents.
Even though the problem of dearth of organ donators seems to be a simple problem that can be solved by the principle of give and take, the implementation model is highly complex. In spite of laudable efforts put in by various parties including the government, medical bodies and NGO’s in forms of conducting awareness campaigns, organ donation weeks and publicizing the need of organ donations, the number of organ donors seems to be scanty.
The malpractice of organ trafficking, misguided religious sentiments, family bondage, orthodox societal views and unavailability of a standardised organ donation ecosystem are the factors that act as a deterrence for the potential organ donors. Moreover, due to the unavailability of a centralized procedure, organ donation has become a game of money power with only the elite having access to the donors first. The increasing incidence of lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes and hypertension that cause organ failures only aggravates the problem. The recent demise of noted politician Vilasrao Deshmukh due to organ failure after being waitlisted in the organ donation list is testimony of the fact this scarcity of organ donors is a problem that can affect people from all walks of life.
There is an urgent need to congregate the efforts of the various stakeholders involved with the issue so as to charter a unified procedure that highlights the benefits of organ donation and gives people access to a lucid procedure to donate organs. Happiness lies first of all in health, and by serving others by this noble deed we justify the need of our existence. Hence it’s rightly said:Â “Don’t take your organs to heaven with you. Heaven knows we need them here.”