Status: Public Comment
Sponsoring Committee: Pancreas Transplantation Committee
Strategic Goal: Provide equity in access to transplants
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Read the proposal (PDF; 8/2019)
Contact: Ross Walton
At a glance
You may be interested in this proposal if
- You or your loved one needs a pancreas or kidney-pancreas (KP) transplant
- You are a healthcare professional who cares for patients with diabetes or pancreatic exocrine insufficiency
- You work for a pancreas transplant program or an Organ Procurement Organization (OPO)
Here’s what we propose and why
The OPTN Pancreas Transplantation Committee proposes to remove Donation Service Area (DSA) and regional boundaries used in the current system and allocate using a 500 nautical mile (NM) circle around the donor hospital. Points would be assigned based on how close the candidate’s transplant hospital is to the hospital where the organ donation takes place. This is to prevent a pancreas or kidney-pancreas being transported further away when there is a candidate of similar priority closer to the donor hospital. The pancreas and kidney-pancreas would first be allocated to all eligible candidates inside the 500 NM circle. If the organ has not been accepted by those candidates, it would then be offered to other eligible candidates.
Location should not impact access to transplant except to promote efficient organ placement and to prevent unnecessary organ loss.
Why this may matter to you
The proposal aims to increase equity for U.S. pancreas and kidney-pancreas transplant candidates by reducing the impact that a patient’s location has on their access to transplant. Certain areas of the country will see an increase in the number of transplants and other areas will experience a decrease. Some pancreata and kidney-pancreata will have to travel further than they do in the current system. This will result in new working relationships between OPOs and transplant centers.
Tell us what you think
- What considerations should be taken into account to select a circle size that distributes pancreata broadly and efficiently?
- Proximity points are intended to contribute to efficiency in the broader distribution of pancreata. Should they be used inside the 500 NM circle? Should they be used outside the 500 NM circle?
- What operational concerns should the Committee consider as this policy is being prepared for OPTN board action and implementation?
- For import back up, should the initial distance from the transplant program be 150 NM or another distance, when considering the efficient reallocation of pancreas and kidney-pancreas? Should proximity points be included outside the initial import match run circle to limit travel costs and preservation time, or should there be a secondary circle of 500 NM to address those concerns?
- Should programs qualify for facilitated placement if the program performs 2 or 5 transplants in 2 years from pancreata imported beyond 500 NM from the transplant program?