China to set up national organ database

The national database is expected to improve distribution efficiency, facilitate the authorities' supervision of the donation and transplant processes, and prevent malpractice.

China is planning to build a national database to record and distribute human organs in order to prevent malpractice and encourage more donors to sign up.

Xinhua reported on Wednesday the country's Ministry of Health has already drafted an organ distribution regulation with an eye on the development of the national database. Deng Haihua, a ministry spokesperson, did add the regulation will have to pass a trial phase first. 

The national organ database is expected to improve distribution efficiency, and facilitate the authorities' supervision in terms of their ability to trace the source of donated organs, Deng said. A waiting list will also be automatically created by the computer system to prevent malpractice, he added.

There is no timeline for when the database will be built though, the spokesperson said.

To support the creation of the database, a network for organ donation and transplants will be formed by 164 qualified hospitals nationwide and a committee jointly founded by the health ministry and the Red Cross Society of China (RCSC) will supervise the network, Deng noted.

According to Xinhua, medical experts have long called for the establishment of a transparent system for organ donation and distribution in order to boost the number of organ donors in China.