The state government of Kerala on April 7, 2018 issued protocols that are to be followed to confirm brain death cases.
The main aim of the move is to make organ transplantation more transparent in the state. Speaking on the same, the state’s Health Minister K K Shylaja said that it is for the first time that a state in the country is putting in place the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to confirm brain death cases.
• The guidelines were drawn on the basis of a directive of the Kerala High Court to put an end to the concerns and doubts of the public related to the procedures of organ donations of deceased and transplantation.
• The main objective of the protocol is to ensure that a patient is declared brain-dead only after it is scientifically confirmed that there is no chance for him/ her to come back to life.
• The guidelines have been drawn up in compliance with all the international guidelines in the same regard.
• Under the new guidelines, three stages of procedures will have to be followed:
- Precautions to be taken before tests to determine brain death
- Analysis of reflective actions of brain
- Apnea Test, which is an important component of brain death assessment
Further, the guidelines provide that one of the four doctors of the medical panel, authorised to declare a patient brain-dead, should be from government service.
The protocol will be applicable to both government and private-run hospitals in the state.