Photo Credit: Supplied

When you become an organ donor, you can also select to donate your tissue; Bone SA has launched a new facility that is geared to save more lives in South Africa.


Cape Town, South Africa (18 June 2021) – Vitanova, the connective tissue bank of South Africa, a brand new, state-of-the-art tissue engineering facility, opened its doors in Cape Town this week. The facility is only the third multi-tissue bank in South Africa and the first of its kind to offer supercritical CO2 tissue sterilisation technology in Africa. It has been developed by Bone SA, a registered non-profit organisation that distributes bone and tissue products to the medical fraternity.

Vitanova was established to address the enormous need for donated tissue and tissue products in South Africa. The facility will be dedicated to increasing the availability of life-enhancing tissue products, increasing the awareness of the need for tissue donation, as well as spearheading an educational drive around the importance of tissue donation. A key part of the initiative is also to increase the number of registered organ and tissue donors in South Africa.

By combining cutting-edge technology with internationally recognised expertise, the team seeks to impact patients’ lives across the country in need of tissue transplant and implantation. Vitanova, which will actively work in all the country’s coastal provinces, will serve as a recovery and processing facility for bone and tissue donations.

Through innovative processes, the facility will use these precious donor materials to create products that can heal and improve the quality of life of thousands of South Africans.

Did you know that thousands of South Africans receive life-enhancing bone transplants to heal bone fractures, fill in bone defects, create new bone where it has been lost or replace parts of bone that have been damaged in an accident or as a result of disease?

The new building will also allow for the training of registrars and nurses, and host other training and events on-site. It will also be an access point to industry partners and the public looking to connect with Bone SA.

The facility represents a significant investment into growing the biomedical sector and specifically tissue engineering capability in South Africa.

“The opening of Vitanova is a significant step towards improving education and increasing awareness around the importance of tissue donation in South Africa,” says Professor Petro Terblanche, chairperson of the board of Bone SA. She adds that the skills, knowledge, and expertise brought together under the Bone SA and Vitanova umbrella are of a global standard.

“We have the potential here to noticeably improve our approach to tissue donation in terms of availability of products”

When you register as an organ donor, you also have the option to become a tissue donor. If you are not yet registered or would like to update your details, you can do so via the Organ Donation Foundation here.

Sources: Bone SA / Vitanova – Supplied
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Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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