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Align units of distribution in closed variance for split liver transplantation

Proposal Overview

Status: Public Comment

Sponsoring Committee: Liver & Intestinal Organ Transplantation Committee

Strategic Goal: Increase the number of transplants

Read the proposal (PDF; 10/2019)

Contact: Elizabeth Miller

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Executive Summary

The OPTN Board of Directors (the Board) approved a new closed variance for the allocation of the second segment of split livers on June 10, 2019. The variance permits participating transplant programs to offer the second segment of the split liver to a candidate at the same transplant program or an affiliated transplant program once the segment has been offered to candidates with a model for end-stage liver disease (MELD) or pediatric end-stage liver disease (PELD) score of at least 33 and Status 1 candidates listed at liver transplant programs within 500 nautical miles (NM) of the donor hospital.

Under the proposed changes, the second segment of the liver would be offered to transplant programs within the same region as the donor hospital, rather than within 500 NM and with a MELD or PELD of at least 35 instead of at least 33. The resolution will also allow these changes to automatically revert to 500 NM and MELD or PELD of 33 upon implementation of the Acuity Circles policy. The proposed changes would allow the units of distribution used in the variance to align with the units of distribution used in the allocation of deceased donor livers.


Joan Keiser | 10/16/2019

Support and appreciate the proposal.

Pati Hughes-Fudge | 10/30/2019

I agree that (within reasonable limits) split livers need to be allocated as often as possible to those who fall into the required position of the rules. I am doing great after 4 years o a split liver donation.

Stephanie Whitehead | 11/03/2019

I strongly support to receive a transplant whether it be a living donor organ donor whatever the case may be I believe I'm a good candidate I'm only 50 years old recently diabetic 25 I had my gallbladder and a piece of my liver taken out two weeks after delivering my son he now has his first child born 3 months ago my granddaughter Amara I would really like to see her grow up and be able to enjoy being a grandmother I've waited so long for this I've been in pain for quite a while and it would be nice to be able to enjoy the last part of my life please help

Society of Pediatric Liver Transplantation | 11/04/2019

The Society of Pediatric Liver Transplantation previously stated strong support in favor of effective measures to increase overall number of transplants and increase utilization of appropriate grafts. SPLIT previously supported the Board approved variance intending for the receiving program or center to incentivize the utilization of the graft for more than one patient. These proposed changes allow the variance to still stand for regional allocation with the caveat that they will automatically revert upon implementation of the Acuity Circles Policy. SPLIT supports these changes.

Carolina Donor Services | 11/06/2019

Carolina Donor Services supports these proposed changes.

American Society of Transplant Surgeons | 11/07/2019

The American Society of Transplant Surgeons (ASTS) supports the OPTN policy proposal’s new language that aligns with subsequent changes in liver allocation. We recommend the OPTN take an iterative approach to all new organ allocation policies by taking small steps with regular reassessments (e.g., one year, etc.) to identify successes and unintended consequences, particularly concerning logistical issues.