EODD 2017 in Bern

We are the proud hosts of the EODD on 9 September 2017!

The idea
The European Day for Organ Donation and Transplantation (EODD) has been celebrated since 1996. The Council of Europe organizes this day together with a host nation. Each year, another member state is supported in promoting the public debate on organ donation and transplantation. This is because the lack of organs leads to longer waiting lists across Europe. This day is part of the collective effort to increase the number of organ donors and ensure the quality and safety of transplantations.

Why Switzerland?
Switzerland has played an important role in the history of transplantation medicine, which began in 1883. Bernese surgeon and Nobel Prize winner Theodor Kocher grafted donor thyroid tissue under the skin and in the abdomen of a young man whose thyroid gland had to be removed. A real breakthrough! Thanks to this transplant, the growth and developmental disorders caused by the missing thyroid gland were relieved.

Another milestone was the development of the active substance cyclosporine at the beginning of the 1970s by Hartmann Stähelin and Jean-François Borel. From this, the company Sandoz in Basel developed the first immunosuppressant. These drugs stop the rejection of transplanted organs: without immunosuppressants, there would be no modern transplantation medicine.