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NASEM Releases Report Providing Recommendations to Improve Donation and Transplantation

March 25, 2022
transporting organ

In February, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) released a new report titled Realizing the Promise of Equity in the Organ Transplantation System to provide expert recommendations to improve fairness, equity, transparency and cost-effectiveness in donation and transplantation. The report delves deeply into the responsibilities and opportunities of the three estates involved with donation and transplantation; hospitals that refer potential organ donors, organ procurement organizations that facilitate donation and allocate organs for transplant, and transplant programs that list patients for transplant and perform transplants.

Realizing the Promise of Equity in the Organ Transplantation System makes near and long-term recommendations. Near-term actions include establishing time-bound performance goals for the overall number of organs transplanted and reducing rates of discarded organs (organs recovered but unable to be transplanted). Other examples include a requirement that hospitals manage surgical scheduling so organ recovery operations and transplants can take place in a timely manner and prioritizing the use of medically complex organs to meet the needs of patients waiting for a donated organ. The report also provides comprehensive suggestions to ensure that donation and transplantation is accessible and equitable to all individuals.

“LifeGift welcomes the consensus study report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine that highlights the opportunities we have in the donation community to continue to increase donation, improve transplant outcomes and ensure all in need have equal access to organ transplants,” said Kevin Myer, president and CEO of LifeGift. “As stewards of these life-saving gifts, we carry a deep responsibility to always strive for performance improvement and ensure our work is done transparently, efficiently, and in service to donors, their families and those waiting for a transplant. We welcome oversight and expert recommendations to guide us in this mission.”

The report was undertaken by the Committee on a Fairer and More Equitable, Cost-Effective and Transparent System of Donor Organ Procurement, Allocation and Distribution and sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. To learn more, please click here.