Despite COVID-19, Mumbai reports 3 organ donations within 5 days

It involved ICU intensivists, brainstem death team and transplant coordinators

organ-donation-heart-doctor-human-organs-shut Representative image

Even as the city is reeling under a fresh wave of COVID-19, Mumbai gave it a reason to cheer, as three organ donations were carried out over the past five days.

The first donor, from Global Hospital, was a 71-year-old man. He had chronic kidney disease and high blood pressure which led to brain haemorrhage. The family was counselled by Dr Shruti Tapiawala, the primary doctor and Dr Prashant Borade, the chief intensivist. The family then consented to donate any suitable organs. 

Rahul Wasnik, the transplant coordinator, then coordinated the whole process of organ donation.

The second donor, from Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai central, was a 17-year-old male who developed brain stem death due to severe head injury in a road traffic accident. 

Dr Parag Rindani, vice president and regional head, Wockhardt Hospitals, said, “It is really challenging to run a transplant programme during this COVID-19 pandemic, in terms of stressed health care workers and the anxiety of recipients regarding infection control and patient safety measures. We hope that this brave decision from the donor family inspires more people to come forward for organ donation and build trust in Wockhardt Hospitals patient safety measures.’’

Dr Kedar Toraskar, director critical care, Wockhardt Hospitals, Mumbai central, said that after counselling the family members, they graciously consented for organ donation.

Once the family consented, the entire process of coordination with Zonal Transplant Coordination Committee (ZTCC), organ retrieval and transplantation were smoothly managed by the transplant coordinator Bhavna Shah.

The third donor from Apollo Hospital, Navi Mumbai, was a 53-year-old woman who had a sudden cardiac arrest. The donor's husband said that doctors at Apollo Hospital tried hard, but she had a severe heart problem. He further said that this decision was made by his son and daughter-in law. "Mom can give life to so many by this donation. She can still live through others body and can continue to see this world with her donated eyes.” The procedure for removal of organs and transplantation was planned and carried out by Ciju Nair.

Dr Tushar Parmar, ICU head, Apollo Hospital, said that in this difficult situation and times there is ray of hope for patients who require organs, because of families who understand and come forward for organ donation. “We salute this family for their noble act of donation.”

Four kidneys, three livers and one heart were retrieved and transplanted. 

The efforts involved ICU intensivists, brainstem death (BSD) team and transplant coordinators.

Dr Bharat Shah, general secretary, ZTCC Mumbai, said that brain deaths continue to occur due to brain haemorrhage or road traffic accidents. “The COVID-19 pandemic should not be the reason to not utilise their organs to save lives of organ failure patients. The hospitals take all due care to prevent infection. In this respect, all the three hospitals need to be applauded for their efforts and saving so many lives.”