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January 13, 2014

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8 donate organs for transplant under city scheme

EIGHT people in Shanghai have donated their organs for transplant since the city officially launched a program just over a year ago.

In December 2012, it was announced that 17 city hospitals were authorized to carry out human organ collection and transplants.

Three organ donations have been made so far this year, Shanghai Organ Donation Office officials said at the weekend.

Under the scheme, the first donation was made last August by a 54-year-old local whose kidneys and liver benefited three patients.

The first child donation was in November, when the parents of a six-month boy, who was brain dead after suffocating, donated his liver and two kidneys to save two children.

Shanghai has been part of the national organ distribution and sharing network since 2010.

The network is run by the Red Cross Society of China which has been experimenting with the initiative in 16 regions as the country attempts to gradually phase out its reliance on organs from executed prisoners.

Under the national network, details of all donated organs must be entered into a database to ensure that those who need them most receive priority.

To date, 169 domestic hospitals are qualified as an Organ Procurement Organization (OPO).

The national health authority is due to conduct checks on each facility around the middle of this year.

An institution will lose its OPO status if it fails to run initiatives encouraging organ donations or if any doctor working there uses organs outside of  the official system.

China passed an organ transplant law in 2007 which has greatly strengthened supervision of organ transplants.

However, the law failed to solve problems such as questionable sources, an acute shortage of organs and illegal organ transactions.

About 1.5 million people are on the waiting list for organ transplants in China.

However, each year only about 10,000 patients manage to get an organ transplant.



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