In the wake of the unearthing of the kidney racket at Powai’s Dr L H Hiranandani Hospital last week, a three-member committee of the Directorate of Health Services is now going to recommend measures to the state government to make it more difficult for an illegal organ transplant to take place.
Among the measures are: linkage to Aadhaar Card, introduction of biometric system, intensive training to hospitals and possession of a copy of Transplantation of Human Organ Act. “An iris scan such as the one in Aadhaar will be a fool-proof method of ensuring there is no fraudulent process involved in getting approval,” said Dr Gauri Rathod, in-charge of organ transplant in Mahrashtra.
Currently, for a live transplant to be approved by a local authorisation committee, at least 16 documents are required. In the July 14 case, where a transplant was halted mid-way between donor Shobha Thakur and Surat-based businessman Brijkishore Jaiswal, a fake copy of ration card, marriage certificate, Aadhaar card and false affidavit were submitted.
“An iris scan or biometric scan machine will be made mandatory at hospitals involved in transplants if this recommendation is accepted,” added Rathod.
The committee is also in the process of questioning 10 doctors from Dr L H Hiranandani Hospital following the racket. While Jaiswal was admitted again at Hiranandani Hospital early Thursday morning after a series of tests at JJ Hospital, Thakur will require continued medical care until her stitches could be removed.
“A large portion of her rib cage was removed to extract the kidney before the transplant was halted. She will require hospitalisation until she recovers,” said a source from JJ Hospital.
The police, meanwhile, has reviewed a video recording of the interview of donor Thakur and recipient Jaiswal with the hospital’s local authorisation committee.
“From the interview we have identified the doctors employed at Hiranandani Hospital and one from an external authority who verified the forged documents of the donor. After the report is submitted within the next few days, we will know whether or not there was any negligence on the hospital’s part,” said a senior police officer.
While the custody of the seven arrested accused ends on Friday, a police team in Gujarat is looking for at least two more individuals who had helped main accused Bhijendra Bhisen find donors for illegal kidney transplants.