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Update Multi-Organ Allocation for Continuous Distribution of Lungs

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The OPTN Board of Directors approved the proposal Establish Continuous Distribution of Lungs in December 2021. This proposal included an update to allocation of multi-organ transplants with lungs, using a candidate’s composite allocation score to rank them on a match. The score chosen was meant to cover 95% of lung multi-organ transplants currently happening. After receiving additional data, the Committee found that the score initially selected would not maintain access for as many patients as expected.

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Proposed changes

  • Update composite allocation score to qualify for a multi-organ transplant involving lungs from 28 to 25
  • Goal is to maintain access for lung multi-organ transplant patients in the new continuous distribution system for 95% of the transplants that are currently done

Anticipated impact

  • What it's expected to do
    • Make sure that current patient access to lung multi-organ transplants is kept about the same as it is now
  • What it won't do
    • Does not change original intent of multi-organ transplant in the continuous distribution of lungs policy

Terms to know

  • Continuous Distribution: A new system of organ allocation that considers individual patient and donor attributes as part of a composite allocation score. This score is then used to rank candidates for every organ offer.
  • Composite Allocation Score: The total number of points assigned to a candidate on the waiting list, which would determine their rank on a match run.
  • Multi-organ candidate: A patient who needs to receive more than one organ transplant at one time.

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Nicole Seefeldt | 08/08/2022

I am for any change that will help lessen the struggle of those who have to be dual or multiply listed for organs, esp because when lung function depletes it’s very hard not to be bedridden from it. Ones quality of life suffers greatly and then to compound that with more organ failure is incredibly difficult. This group has been talked about frequently but something needs to be done to bring them to the level of parity with others who struggle with organ failure, especially the lungs.