‘IMA Walkathon’ saw 3000 Walkers Spread the Message of ‘Donate Organs & Save Lives’

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‘IMA Walkathon’ saw 3000 Walkers Spread the Message of ‘Donate Organs & Save Lives’

Mangaluru: Be a Hero, Be an Organ Donor! Indian Medical Association (IMA )-Mangaluru on Sunday, 25 November organized ‘Walkathon’ to Mark ‘National (Indian) Day of Organ Donations’ at Mangala Stadium, which attracted enthusiastic and determined thousand plus participants, whose aim was to spread the message and bring awareness about Organ Donation. This Walkathon was held two days prior to the “National (Indian) Organ Donation Day which is observed on 27 November.

National (Indian) Organ Donation Day is observed every year on 27 November with a core objective to bring awareness among the public on organ donation, its process, legal aspects, pledging, issuing donor card and also the road safety. The purpose of the celebration is loud and clear – to promote organ donation for those who are in need of them. In India alone, lakhs of people die each year because of their organ failure. Such people could live to see a new day if only people with healthy organs could go ahead and donate their organs. There are many organs which can be donated after death. Donated organs can be life-changing for thousands of people in need, all across the world. Organ Donation Day 2018 promotes the need for organ donation around the country and the need to spread awareness of the same. The main objective lies in removing the taboo around organ donation.

Since there is not much awareness about Organ Donation in Mangaluru, and that only 14 organs have been donated so far in Mangaluru in the land of literates, and only three people donated their organs this year, therefore Indian Medical Association Mangaluru, Association of Medical Consultants, like-minded organizations, religious heads, district administration, political parties and leaders, media friends and brethren in different professions had decided to this Walkathon in order to create awareness on Organ Donation.

The 3 Km walkathon which commenced from Mangala Stadium on November 25 at 6.30 am, passed through main City streets and culminated back at Mangala Stadium. Young and old citizens, students, women, teachers, doctors, advocates, chartered accountants, engineers, journalists, entrepreneurs, workers, bus and rickshaw staff, and many others took part in the walkathon, to create awareness and take an oath on organ donations. Students from various educational institutions, also Red Cross, Kudroli Gokaranatheshwara Temple, among many others took part. The Walkathon was inaugurated by releasing balloons in the air by various dignitaries namely- MP Nalin Kumar Kateel; Ex-MLC Capt Ganesh Karnik; Wenlock Hospital Superintendent Dr Rajeshwari Devi; DCP of Law and Order Hanumantharaya; Dr Prashanth Marla- MD, AJ Hospital & Research Centre; Dr J P Alva- Dean, Fr Muller Hospital; Dr Shantharam Shetty-MD, Tejaswani Hospital; Dr Rohan Shetty- Trustee, City Hospital; Dr Yousuf Kumble- MD, Indiana Hospital; Dr. Shivsharan Shetty, Member of Dental Council of India; among many others.

Prior to the Walkathon, Dr Kishore Phadke, Convener of Jeeva Sarthakathe spoke on the role of activities taken by the organization. He said, ” Jeeva Sarthakathe has been constituted by the Government of Karnataka for a sustained deceased donor (Cadaver) transplantation programme in the state of Karnataka. Jeeva Sarthakathe is the body appointed to oversee the implementation of the Transplantation of Human Organs Act of 1994. The organization aims to coordinate the deceased donor transplantation activities and also educate the public on organ donation”.

“The functions of Jeeva Sarhakathe include, involving the hospitals for active participation of the deceased donor (Cadaver) program through promotional activities, seminars, workshops and educational programmes. The public awareness programme takes place through hospitals, educational institutions, corporates and non-governmental organizations along with media participation. The mission of Jeeva Sarthakathe-To establish effective deceased donor (cadaver) organ procurement and just distribution of organs; To set up organ sharing by minimizing wastage of organs; To assure quality control by collection, analysis and publications of data on organ donation, procurement and transplantation; and To increase public awareness. Jeeva Sarthakathe works through a team effort of participating hospitals for the achievement of a sustained cadaveric transplant programme, and will be entirely responsible for managing the Karnataka State Organ and Tissue Sharing System and any other activity entrusted to it by the Health and Family Welfare Department of the State Government” added Dr Kishore P.

Dr B Sachidanand Rai- President of IMA welcoming the gathering said, “The organ donor can be anyone of which the organ can be transplanted to the patient urgently require. The organ donated by the normal human being is saved properly to transplant into the patient whenever he or she require. One can get the new life through the organ transplantation donated by someone. ‘Heaven’ does not need organs but millions of people will have a fresh lease of life with the organs donated by ‘Brain Dead” patients making ‘Heaven on Earth” for them- and being a ‘Cadaver Donor’ is highly appreciated. A cadaver donor is a person who makes the decision to donate his or her body after death for the sake of scientific experiment and discovery, or for organ harvesting. Hospitals may accept cadavers if some of the organs or tissue can be used for medical purposes. Frequently, the person must give consent to become a cadaver donor before he or she dies, though in some situations, the next of kin can grant the permission for the donation even if the deceased person did not grant permission before death”.

Speaking to Team Mangalorean, Dr Prashanth Marla- MD, A J Hospital and Research Centre, Mangaluru. and IMA State Council, Member said, “There are estimated about 160 people per million who end up in end stage kidney failure, for which transplantation is the best option. There is a need for 25,000 kidney transplants every year but on the contrary 3,500 transplants are being done per year in India. There is substantial number of people who land up with liver failure too, who require transplantation. It is estimated that about 150,000 die in India due to road traffic accidents, out of which at least 50% people reach hospital and later declared “brain dead”. If about 20% of such people’s relatives come forward for cadaveric organ donation, it will help significant number of patients. Not many people are aware of Organ Donation, so in order to bring awareness of Organ Donation, this Walkathon was planned, and it’s nice to see that a large number of people have showed up supporting this event for a good cause”.

Dr Sudhindra Rao M- Honorary Secretary of IMA proposed the vote of thanks. Since IMA had requested hospitals and other institutions to light green lamp or decorate their premises with green lighting, many hospitals including A J Hospital, Fr Muller Hospital, City Hospital, Tejasvini Hospital, Highland Hospital, were among many others lit up with green lighting. Go Green!

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