Organ donation perception and beliefs: a cross sectional study amongst degree college students and teachers in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Keywords:Organ donation, Awareness, Perception
Background: Studies have shown that there is a lack of understanding about deceased organ donation. An adequate knowledge and the right attitude towards organ donation helps create a positive influence on people which may increase the organ donation rate. Since young students are less prejudiced and easily accept new ideas, it is necessary to educate the youth about organ donation through their teachers. At the same time, it is imperative to train teachers who will be responsible for spreading awareness so that they can include this topic in their lessons.
Methods: A cross- sectional study was conducted among the degree college teachers and students in Mumbai city from November 2017- January 2018, after obtaining the institutional ethical approval and written informed consent. Using purposive sampling, teachers and students of degree colleges in Mumbai were approached, out of which 40 students and 40 teachers consented to participate in the study. A self-administered questionnaire was used to assess the pre-existing understanding, beliefs, perception and attitude about deceased organ donation.
Results: Limited number of degree college teachers and students were aware of the various terminologies related to organ donation. Organ donation definition was correctly answered by 23 teachers (57.5%) and 17 students (42.5%). The correct meaning of brainstem death was known to 19 teachers (47.5%) and 2 students (5%). There are certain misconceptions and perceptions about deceased organ donation among both the teachers and the students. 13 teachers (32.5%) and 16 students (40%) believed that donor family will be revealed about the recipient’s details. 7 teachers (17.5%) and 18 students (45%) were of the opinion that government provides monetary support to donor families. decision of organ donation after death rests on relatives was known to 33 teachers (82.5%) and 21 students (52.5%). About 6 teachers (15%) and 18 students (45%) wrongly believed that if conflicts arise between relatives’ organs can still be donated. There’s no possibility of buying /selling of organs in India was known 27 teachers (67.5%) and 31 students (77.5%). About 34 teachers (85%) and 31 students (77.5%) wanted to pledge for organ donation after death. 90% teachers and 80% students said they think deceased organ donation awareness should be incorporated in the education curriculum.
Conclusions: 85% of the study subjects (both teachers and students) felt the need of intensifying organ donation awareness programmes. Thus, organ donation awareness should be effectively incorporated in the educational curriculum.
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