Parents of 10-month-old consent to organ donation, save 2 lives


A little 10-month-old boy named Harshit has become a beacon of hope for organ failure patients who have been waiting several months for a donor. Despite suffering a tragedy of their own, Harshit’s parents consented to organ donation and subsequently saved the lives of two patients with end-stage organ failure—one in New Delhi and one at PGIMER, Chandigarh.
Young parents Reena Rani and Anil Kumar from Yamunagar say that when doctors broke the news that their son might not pull through, they decided they didn’t want his death to be in vain. “It is something no family should have to go through. We said yes to organ donation because we knew this could help someone else and they wouldn’t need to go through the heartache that we were going through. We knew it was the right thing to do,” the grief-stricken couple said.
Prof. Vivek Lal, Director PGIMER commended the efforts of the PGIMER team involved in the process and said, “PGIMER’s team of experts…has successfully accomplished this landmark transplant within a tiny time frame. But it was not possible to reach this far without the selfless gesture of the donor family of little Harshit, who is the fulcrum on which the success of this transplant hinges.”
On 12 July, the toddler had been playing in his cot when he rolled over and fell to the ground. Harshit then suffered a head injury and slipped into a coma. The family rushed the little one to a local civil hospital and then to a private hospital. However, due to a worsening prognosis, he was shifted to PGIMER in an extremely critical condition on 17 July. As per protocols of THOA 1994, Harshit was declared brain-dead two days later. Following this, the transplant coordinators at PGIMER approached the grief-stricken parents who consented to organ donation. “We hope our son’s story will inspire families who find themselves in the same position. We want to make people aware of organ donation to realize that death is not the end of things, people can live on through others, through this,” said the grieving father.
Prof. Vipin Koushal, Addl. Medical Superintendent PGIMER and acting Nodal Officer, ROTTO (North) added, “After family’s consent, we secured [Harshit’s] liver and kidneys. Once the donor organs became available, everyone swiftly got into action leaving no stone unturned to ensure that the donor’s legacy continues.”