The Union Health Ministry is working on a 'One Nation, One Organ Allocation' policy in consultation with states to come up with uniform guidelines for registration, allocation and other aspects of the process, official sources said.
Recently, the Supreme Court asked the Health Ministry to examine and take appropriate action on some states imposing the condition of submission of domicile certificates for patients wishing to register in the cadaver transplant registry for organ transplantation.
A uniform policy, an official source said, "will help patients in seeking transplant from deceased donors at any hospital in the country giving them a lot of flexibility".
Working towards firming up the policy, the ministry has already recommended states to remove the domicile criterion for registering those seeking organs from deceased donor for transplant procedures.
Further, it has done away with the 65-year age limit for registration of patients seeking organs from a deceased donor.
The National Organ & Tissue Transplant Organisation (NOTTO) has made necessary changes in the guidelines which now allows patients aged 65 years and above to register themselves for receiving organs from a deceased donor.
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"For registering patients requiring organs of deceased donors, earlier the upper age limit was 65 years. With this restriction removed, patients of all age groups can register for deceased donor organs. The changed guidelines have been put on the website of the NOTTO," an official source said.
Further, noting that some states have been charging fees ranging between Rs 5,000 to 10,000 for registering such patients, the Union Health Ministry has asked them not to charge money saying it was against the provisions of the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Rules, 2014, official sources said on Thursday.
States such as Telangana, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Kerala have been charging such fees, an official said.
According to officials data, the number of organ transplants has increased from 4,990 in 2013 to 15,561 in 2022. The total number of kidney transplants from living donors have increased from 3,495 in 2013 to 9,834 in 2022 and from deceased donors, it has increased from 542 to 1,589 in 2022.
The total number of liver transplants from living donors has increased from 658 in 2013 to 2,957 in 2022 and from 240 to 761 in 2022 from deceased donor.
The total number of heart transplants have increased from 30 in 2013 to 250 in 2022 while lung transplants from 23 to 138.
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