Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku has encouraged more South Africans to become organ donors.
This comes after the recently-established Provincial Organ Transplant Project Team successfully performed back-to-back kidney transplants on two men at the Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital in Johannesburg on Friday.
The operation was collaboration between three academic hospitals including Steve Biko Academic Hospital and Dr George Mukhari Hospital.
Over 1000 patients are on the waiting list and currently rely on dialysis – a treatment that performs the work of kidneys after the development of kidney failure.
Masuku says there is also a backlog for other transplants other than the kidney.
“The backlog is there and I think we are in definite need of a lot of organs, that’s why we have already started a drive [to encourage people to become organ donors]. We don’t have enough donors that are available and we need to run that campaign and drive to make sure that we have enough organs for us to utilise. The backlog is there and it’s not only about kidneys, it’s also backlog on the liver transplant, heart and the transplant of the uterus,” explains Masuku.