Regional Focus

  • Nabil Khojah (on the left) and Dr Faisal Shaheen.

01.03.2017 By: Andreas Haug

Artikel Nummer: 17969

Heart transplants for the region

Waiting lists for organ transplants are getting longer in Saudi Arabia. Once a donor has been found and the recipient determined, then the transport has to be carried out very quickly. Saudia Cargo is now building on its extensive experience in this field.

Dr Faisal Shaheen, the director gene­ral of the Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation in ­Riyadh, has spent 20 years developing the hospital into a model insti­tution in the Islamic world for heart, kidney, liver, callused skin and pancreas transplantations. Saudia Cargo has been one of the centre’s key partners since 2014, providing logistics support. The carrier has a policy of supporting humanitarian and social work and in this context recently renewed an agreement with the centre for the transportation of ­human organs.


Saudia Cargo carries the organs free of charge and in accordance with inter­national standards for such activities. Saudia Cargo CEO Nabil Khojah told the media that the full-freighter operator’s team that is in charge of this special service handled 217 such consignments in 2016. They are naturally accorded top priority in all cargo terminals in the kingdom’s airports.


The renewed agreement for 2017 includes providing the requisite cargo services in other countries of the region too. The organ transplantation centre will seek to expand its scope in the near future and have more organs available, thanks to special­ised centres and health institutions in the Arab world.   


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