Spain recovers its transplant activity and grows 8% in the last year

Coronavirus countdown in Lleida: hospitals will collapse in 7 days
Coronavirus countdown in Lleida: hospitals will collapse in 7 days

The Donation and Transplant Program registered an 8% growth in the last year and the state donation rate stood at 40.2 per million population (pmp) in 2021.

This follows from the Balance of Activity of the National Transplant Organisation (ONT) presented today at a press conference by the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, who has been accompanied by the general director of the ONT, Beatriz Domínguez-Gil.

Despite the difficulties generated by each of the waves of the pandemic, a total of 4,781 organ transplants were performed in Spain over the past year, which corresponds to a rate of 101 per million population (pmp). This number of transplants was possible thanks to the 1,905 people who donated their organs after death, which places the donation rate at 40.2 donors pmp, and the 324 people who donated a kidney (323) or part of their liver (1) in life. Although the rates do not reach the record levels registered in Spain in 2019, these data reflect a recovery of 8% in transplantation and 7% in organ donation compared to 2020.

Despite the fact that the effect of the pandemic continues, the donation rate reached in Spain, of 40.2 pmp, far exceeds that reported by the rest of the world’s countries in 2020 to the Global Donation and Transplantation Observatory, managed by the ONT as a Collaborating Center of the World Health Organisation. Thus, in 2020 Germany registered 10.9 donors pmp, Australia 18.2; Canada 19.5; United States 38.0; France 23.2; Italy 21.5; UK 18.4; and the European Union as a whole 18.4.

According to data from the ONT, in 2021, 2,950 kidney, 1,078 liver, 362 lung, 302 heart, 82 pancreas and 7 intestinal transplants were performed. Living donor kidney transplant activity has grown by 25% this year, with a total of 323 procedures, an activity very similar to that of 2019, before COVID-19 hit us.

Minister Darias highlighted “the tremendous effort of the professionals who participate in this program and the coordination of the ONT with the support of the autonomous communities so that we can qualify the year 2021 as the year of recovery in terms of donation and transplants. Without forgetting at any time the enormous generosity of Spanish society. This shows that Spain has not only endorsed its world leadership, but has also shown its ability to face adversity, with the sole objective of providing our patients with the best possible therapy”.