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OPTN Offer Filters, an innovative tool that increases efficiency, is available to all U.S. kidney programs

Published on: Thursday, July 7, 2022

Every kidney transplant program in the U.S. is now able to use the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) Offer Filters tool, an innovation that aims to increase the number of transplants by improving placement efficiency. When transplant programs use OPTN Offer Filters, kidneys with certain criteria can be accelerated to those programs that are more likely to accept them. Increasing the number of transplants by expanding the use of Offer Filters is a key initiative of the OPTN’s strategic goals.

Multi-criteria filters get the right organ to the right patient

In 2021, nearly 25,000 kidney transplants occurred, a record volume. Kidney transplant programs accept offers for the organs that doctors determine to be appropriate for their patients, but can also receive many other organ offers they may not be able to accept for their particular patients at that particular time. Factors like donor age, health or kidney donor profile index (KDPI) can impact whether the donor organ is suitable for a patient at a particular moment in their transplant journey. Watch an animation to learn more about KDPI, including why it’s important to match lower-KDPI kidneys, which are expected to function longer, with candidates who are expected to benefit the longest.

System efficiency can improve utilization

When transplant programs set and use screening filters based on criteria relevant to their patients, they can ensure that they are receiving offers that are right for their candidates, and not receiving offers for organs which they would have ultimately passed on - but that may be right for other patients at other programs. Using Offer Filters can also reduce cold ischemic time (CIT), which impacts organ quality.

Programs can create custom filters, but the Offer Filters tool also identifies recommended filters based upon a kidney program’s organ offer acceptance behavior over the past two years.

Since universal access began in January of this year, 79 programs have used filters to ensure organs they would not be able to accept were more quickly offered to other candidates for acceptance and transplant.

Increasing transplants by increasing efficient placement

The Offer Filters project aligns with the OPTN strategic goal to increase the number of transplants, which includes promoting efficiency in donation and transplants, especially of hard to place organs. The OPTN and a committee workgroup focused on the use of Offer Filters are evaluating additional data on the use and effectiveness of the tool.