Vietnamese organ transplant experts joined their colleagues from the US, Japan, Australia and India in discussing solutions to further develop organ transplantation in Vietnam at a seminar in Ho Chi Minh City’s Cho Ray Hospital on Dec. 3.

US Prof. Francis L. Delmonico, who is also President of the Transplantation Society and an expert World Health Organisation (WHO) consultant on human organ transplantation, emphasised the neccessity of setting up a network of organ donors and having transparent regulations on brain dead diagnosis to avoid patients becoming the victims of organ trafficking.

Ethics education for doctors and building a law to protect organ donors are also needed to ensure that harvesting organs for transplantation is not the reason for the death of any organ donor, he said.

Prof. Nghiem Dao Dai, who is former Director of the Organ Transplantation Faculty of the US Allegheny General Hospital, said that all countries, including Vietnam, face a shortage of organ donors.

The number of registered organ donors is less than that of people needing organ transplant, he added.

Vietnam has around 5,000 patients who need artificial blood filtering each year, its blood filtering centres are always crowded, said Dai, adding that many patients died while waiting for organ transplants.

It is necessary to develop the organ transplant strategy, promote information on the issue to increase the number of organ donors as well as eradicate the concept that organ transplants only serve rich people, said Dai.

Cho Ray Hospital has performed seven kidney transplants from brain-dead donors, the seminar was told./.