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HomeGovernment NewsGovernment eases rules for “Cadaver Organ Transplants”, Relaxes Cap on age

Government eases rules for “Cadaver Organ Transplants”, Relaxes Cap on age

New Delhi : The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in a major tweak to the cadaver organ transplant has removed the condition that people beyond 65 years cannot receive cadaver organ transplants. The government has decided to remove the upper age limit of 65 years to be eligible for organ donation, though preference will still be given to younger patients. The government has decided to do away with a clause in the National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation guidelines as the clause violates the ‘Right to Life’, the official said. Now, an individual of any age can register for an organ transplant, the official said.

The ministry is working on a ‘One Nation, One Policy,’ and has also made changes to have a single waiting list for patients, regardless of their domicile. Until now, an organ recipient could register for a prospective transplant in her home state. The patient will be allotted a unique ID by NOTTO upon registering, which will get carried forward even if the patient changes multiple hospitals in different states, according to the official. Among states, Gujarat had made it mandatory for registered patients to furnish a domicile certificate to be eligible for a transplant, but last year the Gujarat High Court quashed the discriminatory policy of the state government.

The health ministry has also instructed states to stop charging registration fees to patients, the official said.States like Kerala and Maharashtra have been charging fees ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000 for registering organ transplant patients.

The number of organ transplants has increased by over three times, from 4,990 in 2013 to 15,561 in 2022, according to data from the Health Ministry.The most common transplant is of the kidneys, followed by the cornea, a part of the eye, according to experts. Among solid organs, the next most common are the liver, heart, and lungs. The kidney accounts for up to 11,423 of the 15,561 organ transplants, followed by the liver (766), heart (250), lung (138), pancreas (24) and small bowel transplants (3).