Organ transplants often occur toward the end of a medical journey. HCA Healthcare continued its robust transplant program, even while managing the challenges of a pandemic, through a full commitment to organ procurement.
Procurement efforts have led to a greater percentage of living donor transplants, a key component in predicting long-term transplant success. Nationally, of the 18,799 kidney transplants in 2021, 24.2% involved living donors, while 75.8% were from deceased donors
Conversely, of HCA Healthcare’s 1,103 kidney transplants, close to 35% involved living donors, and 65% were from deceased donors. Additionally, there have been policy changes at the federal level for the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN), the organization that governs the bylaws and rules related to transplant and organ allocation, explains James.
HCA Healthcare, he says, has worked diligently to expand the exchange of information with the organ procurement organizations, “which then enhances their ability to recover more organs more efficiently.”
That’s critical, says James, because while OPTN and the United Network for Organ Sharing, which manages the national transplant waiting list, receive more than a million referrals for potential donors, only roughly 30,000 patients become organ donors.