Every country is the best or, better to say, number one in something. For example, the USA is the number one in spam emails, Sweden is the best in pop music, Austria is best in paid time off and Croatia is the world number one in organ donor transplantation rates, in relation to the number of inhabitants, of course.
This interesting information made some recent thoughts about organ transplantations spring to mind. Although not having a medical education, I read with great interest the book that deals exactly with this topic: it is called Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. The story of the book is about one of the first ever performed liver transplants from a live donor (the identical twin brother in this case).
I think that the concepts of donating organs as well as transplantation of human organs are great but there are several issues that have to be looked at carefully. This is also a matter for each individual’s understanding and feeling about life, the human body and beliefs, amongst other things.
All these may vary and change depending on the place we are at the moment in our life. Serious disease that requires organ transplant would most probably determine our point of view.
Maybe you have heard about the European organization that is dedicated to human organ transplantation? It is called Eurotransplant and its members are: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Slovenia.
The total population of the eight Eurotransplant member states numbers almost 135 million people. Within this region there are 1,601 donor hospitals and 72 transplant centers. On the waiting list there are 16,000 patients who need a donor organ. Eurotransplant yearly allocates more than 7,000 organs. (www.eurotransplant.org)
The fact that Croatia takes such a high position as a donor doesn’t mean only that the awareness of the concept of organ donation is well known and accepted by the people, but also that the doctors and medical professionals are well equipped for inclusion in the complex and specific process of transporting the organs from the donor to the recipient in the best possible way. In addition, working within the framework of this reputable international organization as well as the World Health Organization, requires a robust and competent legal system together with an unwavering ethical approach.