GKT1 Activity and Practices

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What is happening in the world in human cell, tissue and organ transplantation

The first component of the GKT aims at providing open access to data on activities in cell, tissue and organ transplantation at the global level. In its initial stage the GKT focuses on the number of organ transplantations related to population. Identifying kidney and liver donations as being from deceased or living donors reflects the capacity and efficacy to gather donations after death. It also highlights the need for systems to protect the safety and rights of living donors. The GKT also aims at identifying whether countries have cornea or other tissue activities and whether there is a practice of allogeneic bone marrow transplantation. These first data are progressively improved on an ongoing basis and in relation to the competent health authorities.

An ongoing initiative, progressively more reliable data

The activity data provided for transplantation comes from information communicated by Member States, whether through official publications or in response to a specifically designed questionnaire and exchanges with the growing global network of health authorities in charge of transplantation. However information is not available for all countries and not all of these data are from the same reference year. This information is being collected in a global database which is included in the Global Observatory on Donation and Transplantation (GODT).

Based on activity data analysed from 2008 for 104 countries, representing nearly 90% of the worldwide population, it is shown that around 100, 800 solid organ transplants are performed every year worldwide: 69 400 are kidney transplants (46% from living donors), 20 200 liver transplants (14.6% from living donors), 5 400 heart transplants, 3 400 lung transplants and 2400 pancreas transplants. Although some countries do not provide complete data on deceased donation, information from around 22 400 deceased donors was also reported to the GODT.

:: African Region: 10 countries
:: Region the Americas: 21 countries
:: South-East Asia Region: 9 countries
:: Region of Europe: 40 countries
:: Eastern Mediterranean Region: 12 countries
:: Western Pacific Region: 12 countries

These countries represent most of the countries with donation and transplantation programmes.

Collaboration with the Organización Nacional de Trasplantes

The Organización Nacional de Trasplantes (ONT), the Spanish national transplantation agency, is collaborating with WHO on GKT by maintaining an international observatory for activities on transplantation: the Global Observatory on Donation and Transplantation (GODT).

ONT is a WHO Collaborating Centre.

Comments on the GKT 1 and 2 should be sent to

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Contact information

Transplantation of human cells, tissues and organs
Service Delivery and Safety
Health Systems and Innovation
World Health Organization
Avenue Appia 20
11211 Geneva 27