Ethical and Legal Issues in Organ Transplantation: Indian Scenario
Medicine, science, and the law 2011 Jul; 51(3): 134-40
In 1994, the Government of India enacted the Transplantation of Human Organs Act (THOA) to prevent commercial dealings in human organs. However, a greater number of scandals involving medical practitioners and others in the kidney trade has surfaced periodically in every state in India. The present regulatory system has failed mainly due to the misuse of Section 9(3) of the THOA, which approves the consent given by a live unrelated donor for the removal of organs for the reason of affection or attachment towards the recipient or for any other special reason. Currently in India, approximately 3500-4000 kidney transplants and 150-200 liver transplants are performed annually. However, the availability of organs from brain-dead persons is very low. As a result, live related or unrelated donors form the main source of organ transplantation. Therefore, physicians and policy-makers should re-examine the value of introducing regulated incentive-based organ donation to increase the supply of organs for transplantation and to end unlawful financial transaction.
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