By Kaitlyn Schaeffer

Iran’s Health Ministry recently reported that 300 patients are in need of lung transplants, and only 60 are currently on the waiting list.

In an effort to procure more lungs for donation, doctors in Iran are stepping up their efforts to obtain prompt donation consent from the families of brain dead patients. Once a patient suffers brain failure, the lungs are the first organs to stop working. In order for the lungs to be viable for transplant, they must be removed from the body quickly, thus the need for hasty consent.

In 2003, organ transplant programs were launched in 14 Iranian medical schools in an effort to increase the organ supply. These programs were designed to help identify brain dead patients and facilitate the consent process. There are now 53 such programs throughout the country.

Iran is seeking to create more organ transplant programs, and the health ministry will be inspecting the current ones to make sure their systems are functioning properly.

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