New Delhi: The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, graced and addressed the tenth foundation day of the Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) and the seventh convocation ceremony in New Delhi today (January 15, 2020).
Speaking on the occasion, the President said that In India, we need about two lakh liver transplants a year, while only a few thousand are done every year. There is need to establish liver transplant programs in more public hospitals and ILBS can provide necessary expertise in this regard. But perhaps most crucial is to encourage organ donation and spread awareness about it. There is a huge gap between the requirement and availability of organs needed for saving lives. The dearth of donors results mainly from lack of awareness about organ donation. He urged ILBS to prepare a roadmap suggesting ways and means to encourage Liver donation, to improve the related procedures and protocols, and to strengthen the infrastructure needed to support a higher number of Liver transplants than is currently possible.
The President said that the growing incidence of liver diseases is also linked to our unhealthy lifestyles. He noted that, at present, nearly one out of four Indians have fatty liver and may be ten per cent of them have liver diseases due to excessive body fat. He said that this condition is known to be a precursor to development of diabetes and heart disease. And diabetics have greater incidence of liver disease than others. It is for institutes like ILBS to take up research that can clarify the linkages between our lifestyle and liver diseases. That would help in developing a preventive care system based in lifestyle changes.