In a new report from a national database on U.S. transplant programs, UC Health University Hospital’s kidney transplant program outpaces regional and national results on transplant survival rates, organ acceptance rates and wait-list times.
The University Hospital kidney transplant program recorded its busiest year ever in 2009, with 78 transplants performed and a 23 percent growth in the kidney transplant waiting list. Still, the program maintains waiting times comparable to regional transplant programs and almost a year shorter than programs outside the region.
The results are listed in the latest report from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR), released twice each year. The SRTR contains data on all transplant recipients, transplant donors and transplant centers in the United States as mandated by the National Organ Transplant Act and overseen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
E. Steve Woodle, MD, chief of transplant surgery at University Hospital, says the 78 transplants performed in 2009 represent almost a doubling in the number of kidney transplants performed a decade ago.
“The increase is likely due to a combination of factors,” says Woodle. “One factor is the high proportion of living-donor kidney transplants performed in our program. This is important because living-donor transplants last for an average of 20 years, compared to 11 years for deceased-donor transplants.”
SRTR data shows more than 64 percent of University Hospital’s patients received living-donor transplants, higher than the national average of 45 percent.
Woodle says University Hospital achieved the growth in living-donor transplants by offering programs to address incompatibilities between potential donors and recipients and pioneering kidney exchange and nondirected donor programs.
The data also showed a 100 percent one-year and 92.4 percent three-year survival rate for living donor transplants at University Hospital, exceeding national results.
With an increase in referrals to the program, University Hospital’s transplant wait list grew 23 percent over fiscal years 2008 and 2009, compared to regional and national growth rates under 6 percent. Despite this, University Hospital maintains a median wait-list time of just under 35 months.
Woodle credits new monitoring programs with increasing the efficiency and success of the transplant program.
“Patients are routinely seen in University Hospital transplant clinics within three weeks of referral, after which they undergo a more efficient evaluation process.”