Seminar for stakeholders and opinion makers and social awareness event for the public presenting the experiences of people who have contributed, gave and received life through Organ Donation. - 200 biodegradable balloons shall convey the message
on the value of Donation across the Attika sky
The Hellenic Transplant Organization (HTO) holds on Monday, 15 April, at the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Center (OCSC) a double event on the promotion of Organ Donation for stakeholders but also the public in the framework of the European initiative “Eudonorgan”. The event is an initiative of the European Commission and is held by the HTO with the support of the Onassis Foundation and the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Center.
The aim of the Eudonorgan, which numbers 28 member states, is the communication of matters relating to Organ Donation, both to the public but also to the stakeholders who are significant opinion and policy makers in the field of Transplantation, such as journalists, patients’ associations, volunteers’ associations, health professionals, representatives of services and agencies.
Two successive events shall be held at OCSC in this framework. The first one (8.15 – 13.30 ) is addressed to stakeholders with the participation of speakers and representatives from various EU or non-EU countries, the World Health Organisation (WHO), and representatives from Associations and the Mass Media. The thematic sessions are related to:
- the official guidelines on the establishment of successful transplantation systems;
- WHO’s guiding principles on the achievement of national self-sufficiency in the field of transplantation;
- the importance of applying quality detection systems of potential organ donors in the hospital of our country; and
- the importance of biovigilance in the field of organ transplantation.
Furthermore, the lectures shall present the expected catalytic and developmental role of the Onassis National Transplant Center, the role of the Patients’ Associations in seeking better health services and the necessity of strengthening the public trust towards Organ Donation and the Transplantation System and how this can be achieved.
The official language shall be English (interpretation service available).
The second event, which shall be open to public, shall be held at 14:00 at the OCSC basement atrium. The speakers shall explain how they became ambassadors of Organ Donation through their own personal experience or became part of a “Bridge of Life” through their capacity.
In view of the event, the President of the Hellenic Transplant Organization, Prof. Andreas Karampinis, said: “It is an honour for us that our country was chosen by the European Union to hold the Eudonorgan events and it is our duty to send the message of the value of Organ Donation as far as possible. Across the country and abroad. Because Organ Donation and Transplantation is without frontiers. A Greek donor offers life to an Italian, for example, and an Austrian donor to a Greek. Everything is carried out through human transcendence that must be supported by all health systems and the countries’ infrastructures. Eudonorgan message all over Europe is that the world has now embraced Organ Donation. It is high time all health systems and the people participating in them, i.e. physicians, patients, journalists, politicians, everybody, embraced the idea of Donation and promote it as their pinnacle and symbol of transcendence that is not the exception but part of their daily practices.”
The event for the public shall be mediated by ANT1 journalist on health issues, Ms. Fotini Georgiou. The speakers are:
• Mr. Faidon Karidakis, representative of an organ donor family and founder of the “Bridge of Children - Bridge of Dreams” (Kifissias Avenue, College area), shall talk about the importance of donation for a family and the social offer instincts it activates.
• Messrs. Anastasios and Konstantinos Markouizos (Iaveris) shall talk about the different “rally” of life they had to participate to fight against renal failure. Apart from promoting road safety, now a further objective of their lives is the promotion of organ donation and transplantation.
• Mr. Apostolos Charitonidis, representative of the Renal & Transplant Patients Sports Federation shall present the Greek experience and distinctions at the World Transplant Games and the significance of sports before and after transplantation.
• The Cypriot RIK journalist, Stavros Kyprianou, being both a transplant patient and also an opinion maker, is sending a moving letter to the donor’s family that granted him the right to life after his recent transplantation.
• Ms. Aggeliki Gouziouta, the OCSC Transplant team cardiologist, shall describe, while also presenting visual material, an agonizing air-bridge of life between Greece and Italy for a child patient in Christmas 2016.
• Mr. Andreas Iliadis, intensivist for children, at the University General Hospital of Patras, shall present the complex effort for a heart transplant in young Alexandros, from the moment he was admitted at the ICU up to his discharge from Padova Transplant Center and shall also make a reference to how so many teams (hospitals, ambulance services, air force) in Greece and abroad effectively cooperated, under the coordination of the National Greek and Italian Transplant Organisations so that young Alexandros could return to Greece having won the fight for life.
• 8-Year-old Alexandros, healthy and sound now, shall talk about the lessons he learned from his adventure also present an honorary award to the former Director of the Italian National Transplant Organization-CNT, Dr. Alessandro Nanni Costa, on behalf of the 252 patients that were saved in the last 15 years thanks to the Greek-Italian cooperation.
As it is customary in all countries that Eudonorgan was held, after the conclusion of the speeches, a symbolic activity shall take place as an expression of gratitude to organ donors at the OCSC courtyard, where the Onassis National Transplant Center shall be built: All the participants shall be given 200 biodegradable balloons with the first names of the recent 200 organ donors symbolically written on donors’ cards. They shall release them simultaneously to convey the message on the value of Donation across the Attika sky.
Monday, 15 April, O.C.S.C.