Feb. 6, 2015

Human Organ Transplant Center (HOTC) organized an Organ Donation Workshop on December 22, 2014 which aimed to improve the status of organ donations and transplantations in Nepal. The goal of the workshop was to improve the treatment of organ failure in Nepal by introducing brain-death donation and increasing the live organ donor pool.

Guest speakers included two lecturers from the United States: Dr. Dorry Segev, a transplant surgeon at Johns Hopkins University, and Dr. Sommer Gentry an associate professor of mathematics at the U.S. Naval Academy. From Nepal, guest speakers included Dr. Basant Pant, Senior Neurosurgeon at Annapurna Neuro Hospital and Mr. Komalshali Ghimire, joint secretary of the Ministry of Law and Justice.

We estimate that Nepal is losing about $6 billion rupees per year to patients seeking kidney transplantation abroad. Given these high costs, transplantation abroad is not accessible to most Nepalis. Increasing Nepal’s organ donor pool would ensure that Nepalis are able to receive high quality care in their own country.

Organ donation in Nepal is facing a significant gender bias. 87% of kidney recipients are male, while 76% of kidney donors are female. Expanding the donor pool and increasing the options available for donation would relieve the burden from mothers and wives who are currently pressured to donate kidneys to their sons and husbands.

There is great potential for deceased donor transplantation in Nepal there are about 1,000 brain deaths per year in Kathmandu alone, largely due to traffic accidents. Yet to date 80% of transplants from brain dead donors occur in developed countries. Introducing brain-death donation will help us to expand our kidney transplant program and initiate other organ transplants such as Liver, Pancreas, Heart and Lungs.

The chief guest of the Programme was Hon'ble Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr Mahendra B. Pandey as well as Hon'ble Minister for Health & Population Mr Khgaraj Adhikari. Hon'ble Minister Mr Mahendra Pandey inaugurated the programme by enlightening the lamp (Panas). Speakers of the programme were Hon'ble Ministers, Prof. Dr. Bhagwan Koirala, Chief Cardiac Surgeon of TUTH, Hon'ble Prem Suwal - Member of CA and Dr. Praveen Mishra former Secretary of the Ministry of Health & Population. Likewise, Hon'ble Mr Ramesh Lekhak - Member of CA and Hon'ble Mr Giriraj Mani Pokharel - Former Minister for Health & Population also participated in the workshop.

The technical session of the workshop was chaired by the Chief Secretary of the Government of Nepal Mr. Leela Mani Paudyal.

Workshop was attended by surgeons, physicians, journalists, officials from ministry, local artists and other medical professionals.