The International Conference for Initiatives on Organ Donation and Transplantation was organized in Abu Dhabi, UAE from 7-9 Nov 2022. Speakers from 32 countries (including WHO) and about 1,200 participants attended this conference. Dr Muhammad Wasif Alam (head of Public Health Dept. at American International University – Bangladesh) and Emeritus Professor Dr ABM Abdullah (personal physician to the Honorable Her Excellency Sheikh Hasina Wazed) were invited from Bangladesh.
The aim of the conference was to shed light on global experiences and best practices related to the scientific, charitable, societal and legal aspects. Dr Abdullah gave an update of Organ Donation and Transplantation in Bangladesh while sharing stories of some people who were hesitant or had refused organ donation. Dr Alam spoke about the Public Health perspective of promoting organ donation in Bangladesh and globally. Dr Alam pointed out that despite adequate number of Organ Transplant centers and qualified healthcare teams, the number of Organ Donation is very limited worldwide. Long waiting list and the increasing demand for procuring/purchasing organs from living donor, often has forced poor people to selling vital organs – which has created an illegal and unethical market in many countries. Dr Alam asked the audience if it were just the lack of legislation, hospital resources or is it the culture, approach, process, and trust of our healthcare system for organ donation and transplantation? Understanding the process of counseling families and obtaining informed consent is a vital skill which our healthcare providers may need to learn during their training, Dr Alam added.
From Left to Right: Emeritus Prof Dr ABM Abdullah, Dr Khaled Afify (Conf Director), Dr Wasif Alam (AIUB)