Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Organ donation and Red-tapism

Red-tapism is bureaucratic apathy, that tends to slow things down. We all know about it, and have faced it in one form or the other. So today, when I received an email of a friend bemoaning red-tape that slows down the noble act of "organ donation post-death", I found it quite moving.

To make the public at-large aware of this menace that is slowing everything down, I share that mail here (with my friend's permission) -

"Last Saturday morning at around 5.40 am I received a call from my cousin that my grand father (Nana) Mr Sohanlal Sanghvi (a respected naturopath & yoga expert), age 95, had passed away and that the elders of the family have expressed a desire to donate the eyes of my Nana.
I immediately called up Abhilasha Mimani who was travelling and Ayush Jain who was kind enough to immediately scout for the number of the right person and also make a trip to Indore's biggest government hospital (name being withheld) as nobody on their board number cared enough to take the call. Ayush gave me the number of Mr Sandeepan Arya - 93032 59844 who works with Muskaan (an NGO). Mr Arya was kind enough to immediately respond to our request and gave us some instructions over the phone on the precautions that we should take with the body like not switching on the fan and keeping a moist towel over the eyes. The entire team from Geeta Bhawan along with the doctor were at the location within an hour and removed the eyes and covered it such that nobody could tell the difference. Mr Arya also suggested then that we could donate the skin. Thanks to Dr Manish Patel and Abhilasha, last year we had a session on Skin Donation by Yi and I had a clear understanding of the process. I assured the family that the body wont get mutilated as only a thin layer of the skin is taken from the back and thighs. Immediately we called up Dr Shobha Chimaniya of Choithram Hospital and their team was on the way. Since my Nana had devoted his life to the wellbeing of the ill, the family took the bold decision in a difficult time like this of donating the entire body to the biggest government Medical College of Indore (name being withheld). Again Mr Arya took the initiative of calling the head of Anatomy, the dean of the college etc. It took an hour and over 50 calls to realize that the body can be donated within 4 hours from the time of death (we had another 2 hours), and that the dead should have filled up a form of his acceptance. Even after the entire family backing the body donation, the medical college refused to take the body and kept on passing the buck. Some other private medical colleges were willing to take the body but we didn't want to give the body to a private college which charged lacs for admission. Moreover, the family was hurt because of the bureaucracy and decided to conduct the funeral instead.
I ask:
How many families are in the right frame of mind on a death in the family to think of Donating an organ? Isn't the Government Medical College short of resources? Wouldn't it be right for the Dean of the College / Head of the Anatomy to have himself come, thanked the family for doing a noble deed, and respectfully take the body? Is my family the only one to have faced this? If not, then why isnt the media and the govt taking up this matter? After a humiliation like this, who would in his / her right sense ever think of donating a body to the medical college?
Though I recommend eyes and skin donation, and so did the family, it took me a while to convince my mother (who was traveling and shaken by the news of the death) that donating the body is a good deed and will help the students to become better doctors and eventually save lives. I wonder if I am over enthusiastic about helping others and whether I should stop worrying about the world and let it go to the dogs if so.
If somebody has a proactive and positive suggestion on this then please let me know. Although there is bureaucracy and un-thankful people in the govt, I know there are sufficient needy and good people too.
Anuj Kothari"
Hey Anuj, we all truly appreciate your spirit. And this pain of yours is being shared with many young minds across the country through this blog. I am sure good suggestions will pour in, and everyone who reads this will understand the importance of organ donation, of ensuring that the machinery is made to work the right way, and maybe also to protest for a right cause.

~

25 comments:

sumit said...

Good Morning Sir, i couldn't understood the meaning of YI mention on 15 line.Can you put some light
on that.

Anurag Khandekar said...

Respected Sir,
This is indeed very true to say that, there is no recognition for noble work and as you mentioned there is a lot of cynicism prevalent in our society, so is the case of government and bureaucracy where no one wants to take responsibility and act likewise.Unfortunately what Anuj Sir wanted was not possible. May his grandfather's soul rest in peace.

Warm regards,
Anurag khandekar,
Carnegie Hall,
Fall'09

Hardik said...

Respected Sir,
Thank you for a wonderful insight. I have now understood the importance of donating the organs of our body and the problems that are faced by the families that are willing to donate the organs of their family members.

munish said...

Dear Sir,
It was really shocking to know how Red-Tapism has so deeply imbibed into the system that there seems no end to the sorrows of a common man. The system tends to suppress those who dare to make a difference. Political bungling and bureaucratic brinkmanship has engulfed even the virtues of humanity and conscientious dignity. Don't know where such acts of blaspheming humanity would take the society.
Sir , the initiative intended by Mr. Sanghvi's family is really worth praising and beckon my sincerest regards.


Yours sincerely
Munish Sharma
Fall'09, Indore.

sahil said...

Respected Sir,

The article is quite moving and really gives us an insight on the effects of red-tapesim and how much demotivating it is for people who take the noble initiative of donating human organs.

But, as far as donation of human organs is concerned, there is one more factor which prevents it from becoming a common practice and that is the superstitions people have about it. What is your take on this aspect of the matter?

Regards,
Proton Sahil Agrawal
Fall '08

Anuj said...

Thank you Sandeep for posting it on your blog.

I also thank all the people who read, responded, and blessed.

I am sure a positive approach to any problem will yield positive results. No good deed goes waste. The readers of this blog will certainly do their bit to ensure that we live in a wonderful world and pass on a better world.

We met the dean of the said medical college this afternoon, who was forthcoming with his problems. We have offered him our support to get some clearances from the principal secretary to whom he had written sometime back to make the process of body donation simple and easy.

This may take a while.

Organ donation is certainly less understood and the implementation at emotionally difficult times is also a challenge apart from the religious beliefs. But once understood the merits surpass any expectation.

Thank you all again for the support.

Anuj Kothari

PS: Yi stands for Young Indians, the youth wing of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry). www.yionline.org

vidit said...

Dear Sir,
I feel India is lacking behind, one of the reason can be that there are a lot of formalities in the government sector, as mentioned in the blog, the government hospital was not ready to accept the body.
I also feel that we all work a lot for the betterment of the socety when we are alive and should have the same aim after we leave the world by donating our body to the medical professional so that research can be done on our body comfortably and life saving medicatons can be made available easily.
Thans for sharing the mail with us.
Regards
Vidit Shah

Chetan said...

Respected Sir,

Thanks for sharing this mail with us.
According to our traditions it is considered that after death of the person, he had reached deity and his body is divine and from my point of view this is one of the main reason,why people not agree for organ donation and also for donating body.
But if a family is strong enough to do so, than thanks to our policies and rules which demoralize them and even others also.
This approach of government officials is major part in developing "Kya fark padta he" attitude in our society.
This are hindrance in such a noble cause and if government not take initiatives by own than this red-tapism and bureaucracy will resist noble deeds.


Thank You,
Proton Chetan Choparia
Fall 09
Indore

Manika Juneja said...

Dear Sir,
As you rightly mentioned that red-tapism is prevailing in the society. People say that they are living in the 21st century but still they are living with the old prejudices.

Donating organ is a noble cause in any way as it can serve others. The youth should understand its importance and should take initiatives to pay back to the society.

Regards
Proton Manika Juneja
Fall'08

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

This article was both surprising and shocking for me. Surprising because of the bold decision taken by your family members and shocking because of how that decision was affected due to "Red-tapism".

After reading this article I called up my friend who is his MBBS from a well known medical college from Indore and share a broad overview of the above story and asked his thoughts for the same. He replied to me that donating a body to a government college is not at all a good idea because they can call from government hospital whenever required. So your donation doesn't carry worth to them.

He did justify his comment. So now the question arises that whether to donate in a private college which charged lacs for admission or is our system really eligible for such kind of donations?

Thank you sir this eye opening article. All my respect Late Mr Sohanlal Sanghvi, may his soul rest in peace.

Prateek Patel

Sandeep Manudhane said...

Prateek, Manika, Chetan, Vidit - thanks for reading and commenting. I respect and appreciate your setiments on this sensitive issue.

menal said...

Respected Sir,
It was really a wonderful insight.But it is very sad to know that there is no end to people's sorrrow.Hope this condition improves early for the betterment of our society.


Yours sincerely,
Menal Lunawat
Fall'09, Indore.

Richa said...

Respected Sir,
This real story reminds me a similer situation in which China launched a scheme to encourage the voluntary donation of human organ and two-third of organs used in transplant surgeries comes from executed prisioners.

When a country like China which is governed under'rule by law' can execute this system then why can't a country like India having not only strong bureaucratic system but also governed under 'rule of law'is unable to execute it?

India is known for its altruism and submissive culture.

Yours sincerely
Proton Richa Rai

rahul said...

Respected sir,

Sir your each and every blog gives us great learnings, but sir i`m having some questions, which are...

1) If a person has not donated his/her any body part, then is the family having right to donate his/her body part after death?

2)sir from the first day at PROTON I`m observing that the faculty staff is totally young. why did u not choose old faculties having much more experience then these? what is the reason behind it?

sir could u plz tell me about advantages and limitations also.

With warm regards,
Rahul Jain
Fall 09

gaurav said...

Respected Sir,

Greetings!

I read your recent blog on organ donation and Red-tapism, I must congratulate you and Mr. Piyush not just for your philanthropic motives and thoughts but bringing issues like organ donation, which generally fail to garner even humble attention of society and media.

Sir, I do recognize the pain and suffering experienced by Mr. Sanghavi's family but there are some points due to which I disagree with Mr. Piyush's views on organ donation and red-tapism.

First is, if we consider routine procedures, rules, laws and obligations which are (at least) followed by government institutions and public servants as red-tapism, it will be hard to differentiate bureaucracy which is must for smooth functioning of government and even private organisations, from red-tapism (over bureaucracy), a real hurdle for rapid growth in our system.

Second is, we frequently come across news of organ smuggling and organ rackets involved in illegal organ trading. To stop the same, formation and follow up of laws and regulations is must.

Further, it is in favor of human rights to receive a formal permission of the person for donation of his body after his death, and system is bound to protect rights of its citizens even after death.

Courage and maturity shown by Mr. Sanhavi's family cannot be generalized with various other cases where chances of wrongful motives are frequent. Instead of mourning on situation of red-tapism or over bureaucracy we can launch an awareness program to promote organ donation so that those who are willing to associate themselves with such great cause do not bear the brunt of government rules and laws.

Gaurav Sharma
BBA-FT
IPS Academy

Gaurav Taranekar said...

Respected Sir,

The picture with this post best describes the situation of
"Common Man" in our country.
I think most of us are getting habitual of it.
Although we have a conservative society in our country in which people are not in favour of organ donation the decision taken by the family of Mr. Anuj is a great example for our society, Hats off to them.
May his grandfather's soul rest in peace.

Warm regards,
Gaurav Taranekar
Fall'09

Sandeep Manudhane said...

Thanks to Menal, Richa, Rahul, gaurav, Gaurav (Taranekar) for reading and commenting!

Your concern for this sensitive social issue is touching. I am very happy that you have realised how important it is to be socially alive to these issues and not let our awareness be dimmed by the onslaught of reckless consumerism.

Rahul - thanks for your question about the faculty at PROTON.

Our motto at PROTON is "performance and transformation". The way PROTON is built, it demands youthfuless all around. Please understand the difference between "youth as age" and "youthfulness as an attitude". My personal preference is always for faculty who are youthful.

Coincidentally, most of my faculty are in the age bracket of 28 to 45 years, and the selection process ensures that we take in "fit" people (just recall "Walk-PT-Walk"). The reason is simple : For classroom interactions, I want my students (18-22 yrs age, maximum of them) to have the best connect with the faculty members. Like it or not, it is a bit difficult for any faculty beyond 50 years of age to bring in practical examples relevant to your generation. They are either stuck in their beliefs (most of which are completely outdated) or unable to related to what's the in-thing today.

10 years ago, there was no Google. It takes a lot of courage to accept that Google is the reigning deity today. Those who have the capability of accepting such changes are "youthful". This is also called the capability of undergoing successful "evolution".

Of course, exceptions do exist. You will find them at PROTON campuses. But generally, it makes our job much easier when we get people who are "youthful" which, as discussed, incidentally reflects a certain age in India. So, get me a Prof 75 years old who can deliver well inside the class with a youthful spirit, and we'll be together in no time!

There is a huge team of senior people (upto 80 years) who have guided the PROTON vision (and the PT universe vision). Many of them are silent supporters you will not get to see.

To see the reactions of the world to what the PT universe has built at PROTON, just go through www.Proton.in/testimonials/guests.aspx

{My team told me that I needed to really get online in a big way. And presto! I learnt from zero the art of blogging, tweeting, facebooking, orkuting, and linking-in! It's this attitude that keeps one going. I pray to God he keeps me this way always, even at 80!}

shraddha said...

Respected sir,
Thanks for sharing a practical problem with us.Even i want to share one incident.

Few hours before the death,my mother's uncle made a call to a govt. hospital.Nobody knew that what he was doing.Then 2 doctors came there with some documents and without talking to anyone else they got the documents signed by uncle.
After his death an ambulance came and they tried to take the body immediately.They didn't try to make family member understand that why they are doing so.Even at the time of great sorrow,they started bickering with the family members and said "its our property now ".and took the body.

Has humanity vanished from the society?
Couldn't the doctors gave some more moments to the suffered family?
Couldn't they make them understand about my uncle's wish?

Regards
Shraddha Pareek

ROHIT said...

respected sir,,
the article and the mail really disapproves the common belief that its the public that avoids taking initiative for noble causes such as organ donation..it uncovers the reality of our system..which actually being the culprit itself ,,always tries to blame the common man..thnk u sir for such an insightful article..

link-http://thesurvivingsoul.blogspot.com/

sir i have made a humble try to write a blog of my own..based on your motivation and advice..i request you to please read my first post and comment on the same..thnk u..

vipul said...

Dear Sir,
warm Greetings.
It was so shocking to know that Red-Tapism is so deeply rooted in our system. Hard to believe that this can also happen in society like India where people are ready to donate still system is doing like this. It is very hard to take decision of organ donation. It requires hard will and broad mentality. Its not easy even for the donor and family members to take decision on this.
Even I have faced this type of situation. Nadiyad is a place in Gujrat very India's best Kidney Transplant hospital is situated. My aunty was ready to donate her kidney to a needy one, but due to Red-Tapism , she was not allowed to donate. Seriously hard to believe.
Thank you Sir for such shocking yet greatful insight which forced me to think about this.
Regards.
Proton Vipul Kothari
Fall' 08

Kanchan said...

Respected sir,
Thanks for sharing a real problem , Quite strange! first of all its not easy at all for a family to make such a bold decision but still they do for society , but such a bold decision are being affected by Red Tapism.
Nobody could believe that we have enter into such a modern and civil society only because of bureacracy.......

Regards
Kanchan pahuja
PIMR, Indore

Sandeep Manudhane said...

Hello Shraddha - your comment was emotional. We respect your sentiment.

Rohit - very good start you have made. Keep at it. You will evolve.

Vipul - sorry to hear about that "Gujarat" hospital. Let's hope that positive action from young men like you force people to change their ways for the better.

Kanchan - thanks for reading, and commenting.

sanjana said...

INVITATION to contribute real life stories on Organ/tissue Donation and Transplants
We invite you and your friends and family to share your experiences on organ and tissue donation and transplants with Shatayu. We are looking for real life stories on organ donors and organ recipients. Stories from people who are waiting for an organ will also be accepted.
Shatayu- a nonprofit organization, is an initiative of GovindBhai C. Patel Foundation which is supported by Ganesh Housing Group and is in affiliation with Indian Red Cross Society, Institute of Kidney Disease and Research Center (IKDRC), and Dr. H.L. Trivedi Institute of transplantation sciences. Shatayu is a noble cause that aims to create and spread awareness about Organ and Tissue Donation.

At Shatayu we believe that real stories help people understand the critical need for organ donation. These stories can help people learn what others have done and what they can do at their home, workplace and community to save lives. Share your ideas to increase awareness about the need for organ and tissue donation. Please forward or direct us stories so we may post them on our website and blogs to share them with others. By the means, you can spread the message and can put your own example to inspire other people. You can not only inspire other people but also help save lives indirectly.

Below are few considerations you would like to know regarding submitting your stories.
• Stories must be true and written in English.
• There is no limit for submitting the number of stories.
• Please specify your name, age, gender, address and email id.
• You must be willing to have your stories edited to suit the format of Shatayu.
• Stories must be unique, original and should be declared as such by submitting members.


Please send your details
Contributors are requested to send their personal details that can help SHATAYU to reach at you easily or can send your written stories here:
You may email your contact details at info@shatayu.org.in
You may call us on 079 6618 9000 or +91 9924133569 or +91 9662872546
You may post your details at: SHATAYU, 1st floor, Samudra, Nr. Klassic Gold Hotel, Off C.G. Road, Ahmedabad – 380006

Please Note: There will not be any remuneration or any exchange of money with Contributors. It is the self wish of contributors who are willing to spread the awareness about organ/tissue donation. Shatayu is heartily thankful to those who share their stories.

sanjana said...

INVITATION to contribute real life stories on Organ/tissue Donation and Transplants
We invite you and your friends and family to share your experiences on organ and tissue donation and transplants with Shatayu. We are looking for real life stories on organ donors and organ recipients. Stories from people who are waiting for an organ will also be accepted.
Shatayu- a nonprofit organization, is an initiative of GovindBhai C. Patel Foundation which is supported by Ganesh Housing Group and is in affiliation with Indian Red Cross Society, Institute of Kidney Disease and Research Center (IKDRC), and Dr. H.L. Trivedi Institute of transplantation sciences. Shatayu is a noble cause that aims to create and spread awareness about Organ and Tissue Donation.

At Shatayu we believe that real stories help people understand the critical need for organ donation. These stories can help people learn what others have done and what they can do at their home, workplace and community to save lives. Share your ideas to increase awareness about the need for organ and tissue donation. Please forward or direct us stories so we may post them on our website and blogs to share them with others. By the means, you can spread the message and can put your own example to inspire other people. You can not only inspire other people but also help save lives indirectly.

Below are few considerations you would like to know regarding submitting your stories.
• Stories must be true and written in English.
• There is no limit for submitting the number of stories.
• Please specify your name, age, gender, address and email id.
• You must be willing to have your stories edited to suit the format of Shatayu.
• Stories must be unique, original and should be declared as such by submitting members.


Please send your details
Contributors are requested to send their personal details that can help SHATAYU to reach at you easily or can send your written stories here:
You may email your contact details at info@shatayu.org.in
You may call us on 079 6618 9000 or +91 9924133569 or +91 9662872546
You may post your details at: SHATAYU, 1st floor, Samudra, Nr. Klassic Gold Hotel, Off C.G. Road, Ahmedabad – 380006

Please Note: There will not be any remuneration or any exchange of money with Contributors. It is the self wish of contributors who are willing to spread the awareness about organ/tissue donation. Shatayu is heartily thankful to those who share their stories.

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