The Chairman of the Board of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Dr. David Nkansah, has admonished parliament to as a matter of urgency expedite processes to legalize organ harvesting and transplanting in the country.
He was of the view that when this is done, it would help save the lives of several persons in need of transplants to survive.
He made the appeal at the launch of the hospital’s centenary anniversary.
He stressed that several persons needed these transplants and when achieved it would give Ghana international recognition as a healthcare facility noted for urgent health intervention in the West African sub-region.
“We are therefore calling on parliament and other agencies to support the preparation and passage of the law on tissue donation, harvesting, and storage of various organs that will save the lives of thousands of Ghanaians who are sick and in need of them,” he stated.
Law to regulate organ transplants including kidney, heart and others in the offing – Nsiah Asare
A few months ago, the Presidential Special Advisor on Health, Dr. Nsiah Asare disclosed that a legal framework that will regulate cornea and other organ transplantation in the country will soon be passed.
He disclosed this at the First Ever Cornea Summit organised in the country.
He explained that when passed, the law would allow for the harvest of vital organs and in this case, cornea to save patients.
He also appealed to lawmakers in Ghana’s parliament to as a matter of urgency pass the law to make this policy a reality.
The event organised by the Ophthalmological Society of Ghana with support from HCP Cure Blindness, a United States non-governmental agency, was on the theme: “Paving the Way to Cure Cornea Blindness in Ghana.”
The Presidential Advisor said the importance of corneal transplantation legislation and the promotion of eye and organ donation was therefore crucial to achieving total socio-economic transformation of the unfortunate patients and the nation for “health is wealth.”
“Providing the legal framework to human organ/tissue donation makes the framework stronger for eye and organ donation to operate.
This is the missing critical component of the puzzle that is needed and should be timely, as many go blind every day because we do not have the requisite legislation in place to guide human organ/tissue donation, counselling, storage, and distribution for necessary transplants to take place,” he stated.
”All that is left to be done is to have the law or legislation backing tissue and organ transplantation not for only the eye alone but for the kidney, for the heart and other things. We need to have proper laws which would guide this so nobody would catch somebody somewhere and remove the eyes.
That is exactly what we want to do to assist to make this law happen. We are hoping that it will go through the proper processes for the Ministry of Health to go through the cabinet for approval and go through parliament, and I hope that when the time comes, we will all join together and impress upon our legislators to pass the law which we need as quickly as possible.”