Data from the Shahid Dharmabhakta National Transplant Centre (SDNTC) in Nepal reveals significant gender disparities in the pool of living and deceased organ donors. A staggering 78 percent of donors are women, while only 22 percent are men. Interestingly, all recipients of organs donated by women are men, while the number of women recipients of organs donated by men is negligible. This disparity can be partly attributed to a higher rate of donation refusal among men.
According to Dr. Pukar Chandra Shrestha, the executive director of SDNTC, there is a prevailing mindset where men often deem it unnecessary to donate organs to women. This perspective needs to be eliminated. In an effort to encourage organ donation, there is a provision in place where men who donate their organs to women receive Rs 50,000 as compensation. However, it seems this provision has not been effective.
Furthermore, women have been prioritized threefold in receiving kidney transplants from individuals whose brain function has ceased. This reflects the existing societal perception of women as secondary citizens. The notion that men are solely responsible for caring for their families has contributed to their resistance to organ donation.
Changing this mindset and ending gender disparities will require significant efforts. Investment is needed to alter the perception of men and society toward women. All stakeholders, including the government and private sector, must contribute from their respective positions, and the education curriculum should be tailored accordingly.
With inputs from RSS.