Knowledge and Attitude Regarding Organ Donation among Medical Students

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Introduction. All over the world people on organ transplant waiting lists die due to shortage of donor organs. The success of organ donation program needs education of the population regarding organ donation for which healthcare professionals are most suitable. The present study was taken up to assess the knowledge and attitude of 1st, 2nd and 3rd year medical students about organ donation. Methods. A specially designed self-administered questionnaire was distributed amongst all willing 1st, 2nd and 3rd year medical students at our Medical College and later analyzed statistically. Results. A total of 157, 145 and 92 students from each year of medical education respectively gave their consent for participation in the study. Awareness regarding organ donation was found to be 98.7-100%, 69.4% claimed television as their source of information regarding organ donation and 46.7% stated that it is possible for patient to recover from brain death. The awareness regarding eye, liver, heart and kidney donations was found to be 92.4%, 87%, 87% and 97.8%, respectively. 87% of medical students were aware of need for legal supervision, and awareness regarding the existing laws was found to be 57.6%. Conclusion. Medical students had a high level of awareness and a positive attitude towards organ donation. However, knowledge regarding “brain-death”, organs and tissues donated, legislation and ethical issues was poor. A teaching intervention designed to specifically address these issues could help increase the confidence of the health-care professionals and may result finally in increased organ procurement rates.

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