Muscat – To commemorate Omani Organ Donation Day, observed on December 19, the Ministry of Health (MoH) has announced that 323 organ transplant procedures have so far been performed in the sultanate.
Regulating human organ and tissue transplantation is complex and difficult, and is considered one of the biggest challenges faced by the health system.
A statement issued by The Royal Hospital said, ‘The total number of organ transplants carried out within the national organ transplantation programme is 323, of which 310 were kidney transplants and 13 liver transplants.’
MoH recently announced a decision to set up the National Centre for Organ Transplantation.
H E Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed al Sa’eedi, Minister of Health, informed that organ transplantation in Oman started in 1988 with kidney transplants, “but it is unfortunate that development in this field was very slow for several reasons. In 2017, we started liver transplants. The outbreak of the pandemic forced us to stop that programme. However, now it has resumed at The Royal Hospital.”
There are more than 2,260 patients on dialysis in the sultanate, who often visit dialysis centres in the morning and then leave for work, H E Dr Sa’eedi noted. “These patients face psychological and physical suffering. The sultanate is equipped to perform organ transplantations, especially kidney transplants. We must now begin to do more organ transplantations, including liver, bone marrow and cornea.”
In March 2021, H E Dr Sa’eedi issued a ministerial decision to develop a national programme to regulate human organ and tissue donation. The decision aimed to establish guidelines in the field of transplantation of human organs and tissues.
The National Programme for Regulating Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues is also proposing priority standards for performing human organ and tissue transplantation, control mechanisms and inspection of medical practices in this area, besides developing a plan to enhance community awareness about the significance of tissue donation and encouraging organ donation.