According to the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Rules, 2014, in the priority list, foreign nationals are at the end only after filling up the needs of Indian patients
The Delhi government has clamped down on private hospitals giving away corneas to foreigners. This is to be done only on saying that there are no available local recipients for organ donation in Delhi.
Cornea is the transparent tissue that covers the eye. An eye transplant involves the replacement of the diseased or scarred cornea with a donor graft.
The state government in Delhi has notified new rules for eye transplant. It is now compulsory for all hospitals to obtain an NOC (no-objection certificate) from at two institutes in Delhi namely AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) and Guru Nanak Eye Centre. These two institutes maintain the waiting list for patients trying for an eye transplant. Only after the NOC, can the private hospitals allow foreign nationals to receive the cornea transplant.
According to the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Rules, 2014, in the priority list, foreign nationals are at the end only after filling up the needs of Indian patients.
Dr Anil Agarwal, who heads Delhi's Organ Transplant Cell, said that unlike the heart, kidney and liver, eyes can be donated even after death.
According to Organ Retrieval Banking Organization, a wing of AIIMS, over 1 lakh corneas are required every year, whereas only 25,000 are transplanted. Similarly, there is a need for 1-1.5 lakh kidneys per year but merely 3,500-4,000 transplants take place. For liver transplant, the need is 15,000 -20,000 every year but only around 500 take place.