A transcendental milestone was the creation of the first Eye Bank in Colombia in 1969, which in its early years was called the San Ignacio Eye Bank, later it was called “The Miracle of Seeing” Eye Bank and finally, when the Transplant Law was passed in the Constitution of Colombia, he was a founding member of COBANCOL (Corporación Banco de Ojos de Colombia), located within the facilities of Barraquer Clinic since 2003. Being the first eye bank in the city of Bogotá – Colombia.

Barraquer Clinic, is a pioneer in Colombia in ocular tissue transplantation and has a team of multidisciplinary specialists who have contributed to thousands of people seeing life with different eyes under our slogan “Donate your eyes is to survive a little”

 Frequently asked questions regarding organ donation

Donation is a voluntary act by which a living person or their family after death authorizes the removal of organs and tissues for transplantation, in order to help other people. The donation is disinterested and altruistic, since for it there is no remuneration or retribution for the donor or her family. Organ transplantation is a medical treatment by which organs, tissues and diseased cells are replaced by those of a donor. These procedures offer excellent results, improving the quality of life of people, as well as prolonging it.

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Diseased organs, tissues, and cells are replaced with those of a healthy donor. These procedures offer excellent results in the quality of life of people, in addition to prolonging it.

Organs: heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, intestine, pancreas.

Tissues: corneas, skin, bones, bone marrow, blood vessels, heart valves, cartilage, tendons, sclera of the eye, amniotic membrane.

Kidney, liver, heart, cornea and bone marrow transplants are included in the Mandatory Health Plan (POS) and therefore have no cost. In the case of other transplants, they are also covered by the health system. People who need an organ and/or tissue transplant treatment can access it regardless of sex, religion or economic condition.

Yes, some organs and tissues can be donated during life. For example, a paired organ such as a kidney can be donated to a relative or related person, as long as the requirements established in current regulations are met. You can also make a donation of tissue such as bone marrow for a related person.

The donation procedure is carried out at the time a person dies in a situation of brain death or cardiorespiratory arrest and after requesting consent for the donation of their organs to their family. Only the organs and tissues that the family has indicated on the acceptance form and those that are suitable for transplantation after verifying their function with the different tests that are performed are extracted. That is why it is essential that the living person express to their family their willingness to be a donor.

Brain death occurs when a person suffers a catastrophic brain injury that causes the total and irreversible cessation of the activity of the entire brain, which is responsible for controlling the functioning of all organs.

People who are brain dead are considered medically, ethically, and legally dead.

It is possible to artificially and temporarily maintain organs with drugs and medical equipment while determining the possibility that they can be donated.

Organ and tissue donation proceeds once a person is diagnosed with death by neurological criteria (brain death). At this time, a series of tests are carried out on the donor to determine the viability of the organs and tissues. In the case of death due to cardiorespiratory arrest, only tissues can be extracted.

In Colombia there is extensive regulation of all aspects related to the donation and transplantation of anatomical components, including Law 73 of 1988, Law 919 of 2004 and Decree 2493 of 2004, as the most important. This regulation regulates the processes for the donation of organs and tissues for the purpose of transplantation of deceased and living people, the donation mechanisms, the technical-scientific aspects and the sanitary measures in case of non-compliance.

We can all be donors. Only at the moment the person dies is it determined whether or not he is suitable to become a donor, he anticipated the consent of his family for the donation.

In life, a paired organ or tissue can be donated, in accordance with established clinical and legal conditions. Organ donation has no age limit; in the case of minors, these can be donors with parental consent.

It is a mechanism by which organs and tissues can be removed. In Colombia, if there is no opposition to the donation by the living person or by their family at the time of death, organs and tissues can be donated as long as the maximum hours established to ensure the quality of the donation have not passed. these, and there is no legal medical contraindication in the donor to be able to extract them.

The Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplant Network was created by the Ministry of Social Protection in 2004, in accordance with Decree 2493. It is an integration system for Tissue and Bone Marrow Banks, Service Provider Institutions Institute of Health (IPS) enabled with Transplant or Implant programs, the National Institute of Health (INS), the Departmental and District Directorates of Health and other actors in the system. Seeks the coordination of activities related to the promotion, donation, extraction, transplantation and implantation of organs and tissues, in order to make them accessible in quality conditions, in a timely and sufficient manner to the population, following the principles of cooperation, efficiency, efficiency, equity and solidarity.

  1. A person who suffers from a chronic or acute disease and whose treatment could be a transplant must be referred by their specialist treating physician for a pre-transplant evaluation to an IPS authorized with a transplant program.
  2. After this referral, the Benefit Plan Management Company to which it is linked (Health Promoting Entity -EPS- or Departmental and District Health Directorates) must authorize the procedure in an IPS authorized with the required transplant program, in accordance with what is concluded in the pre-transplant study.
  3. Once the pre-transplant study determines that the patient meets the clinical conditions for the transplant to be performed and the insurer’s authorization is available, the patient is placed on a waiting list for the required transplant.
  4. Carrying out the transplant procedure depends on there being a compatible donor and there is organ donation so that they can be used for this purpose.

The allocation of donated organs and tissues is made to people who are on the waiting list, guaranteeing equity in the allocation, without discrimination for reasons of family origin, socioeconomic status, sex, race, religion, among others, responding only to the compliance with the technical and scientific criteria defined at the national level for this purpose. This activity is audited and controlled by government entities, ensuring the transparency of the process.

The information related to the donor, the recipient and the donation process is subject to confidentiality and therefore is confidential.

The most important thing is to inform your relatives about your desire to be a donor, so that at the time of your death your decision is informed and respected. Another option is to acquire the single national donor card, in a virtual process with the National Institute of Health.

The card can be purchased at the National Institute of Health, where you must provide your basic data to register. Once you have entered this information, you are ready to download, save and print your card whenever you want.

Yes. You must state the National Institute of Health, through telephone numbers 2200925 in Bogotá and 018000113400 in the rest of the country.

There are myths that have been created by unscrupulous people around the world to generate confusion and fear regarding the subject. The most common are:

Is the donor disfigured?

IT ISN’T TRUE. The donor’s body does not suffer any deformation. Organ and tissue procurement is performed by specialists. Once the procedure is over, the donor preserves his or her body aesthetics so that the corpse is later delivered to the family.

Is there organ trafficking?

IT ISN’T TRUE. In Colombia, Law 73 of 1988, Law 919 of 2004 and Decree 2493 of 2004 prohibit this practice, considering it a crime. Likewise, the entire donation and transplant process is monitored and coordinated by state entities such as the Ministry of Health and Social Protection, the National Institute of Health, and the Secretaries of Health.

Likewise, organ and tissue transplants, being highly complex procedures, are performed in institutions that have adequate infrastructure and personnel specifically trained in that area. Each procedure performed is monitored and controlled.

Do religions not accept organ and tissue donation?

IT ISN’T TRUE. Many world religions, including Catholicism, are in favor of organ and tissue donation, and see it as an act of help and solidarity towards another human being.

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