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Donations and transplants in 2017

A new organ donation record in Catalonia paves the way for 1,106 transplants

11/01/2018 13:01
Carnet de donant

The Catalan Transplant Organization (OCATT) has presented its overview of donations and transplants in Catalonia in 2017, and once again Catalonia is an international point of reference thanks to the generosity of donors and their families.

The total of living and deceased donors amounts to almost 500 people; 471 to be exact.

An all-time record was reached in 2017 in terms of cadaveric donations with 333, a rise of 5.7%, which is a rate of 44.1 donors per million inhabitants. Bellvitge Hospital, with 53 donors, was the medical centre with the most cadaveric donations.

With regard to donor consent, 86.3% of the families of potential donors – almost nine out of every ten – gave their consent to the donation of their family member's organs.

Catalonia has beaten its own transplant record with 1,106 interventions – 8.8% more than in 2016 – making it the leading community in this respect in Spain. In addition, with 146.5 transplants per million inhabitants, Catalonia boasts one of the highest transplant rates in the world.

  • By transplant type: There was an increase in kidney (10.2%), heart, (9.1%), lung (21.9%) and pancreas (21.4%) transplants. There was a slight drop in liver transplants (-4.2%).
  • By hospital: Vall d'Hebron Hospital performed 271 transplants, followed by Bellvitge with 252 and Hospital Clínic with 245.
  • Paediatric transplants: Since the first transplant to a patient aged under 18 in 1981, some 900 transplants have been performed, mainly at the Sant Joan de Déu hospital and the Maternity and Children's wing of Vall d'Hebron Hospital. In 2017 a total of 36 interventions were performed (19 kidney, 10 liver, 5 heart and 2 lung transplants).
  • Tissue and cell donations: There were 1,557 donations to the Blood and Tissue Bank of Catalonia, an increase of 7.8% compared to 2016, from which 2,432 tissues were obtained (6.6% more). In total, 1,537 corneas, 185 heart valves and 126 blood vessels were donated, and there were 338 donors of musculoskeletal tissue and 246 skin donors.
  • Bone marrow: Over the course of the year, 5,689 new donors were added to the Bone Marrow Donors Registry, and 25 bone marrow or peripheral blood donations for transplant were carried out.
  • Umbilical cord bank: Some 73 units for transplant were distributed.

Waiting lists for organ transplants
As of 31 December 2017 there was a shortfall of 1,226 organs for transplant, of which 1,015 are kidney, 119 liver, 30 heart, 42 lung and 20 pancreas.

Catalonia has one of the world's highest transplant rates, with 146.5 per million inhabitants

Further information