Deceased Organ Donation Transplant Wait List

Livers Given to Non US Residents (also not US citizens)

The numbers below are regarding non-US citizens who reside some place other than the US who travel to the US solely for the purpose of a transplant.

In this case, a deceased liver transplant.

685 non-resident, non-citizens received a deceased liver transplant in the US from 2000-2010. so did 24,294 US citizens.

94 transplant centers total performed at least one deceased liver transplant on a non-resident, non US citizen during that time.

12 of the facilities gave at least 10% of livers to non-resident, non-citizens. All but 3 were children’s hospitals. Those three were low volume centers, so even one non-resident, non-citizen affected the stat considerably.

Flat numbers*:

109 – Jackson Memorial Hospital, FL
50 – UCLA Medical Center, CA
41 – Mayo Clinic, FL
34 – University of Pittsburgh Medical Center – PA**
34 – University of California, San Francisco Medical Center
20 – Rochester Methodist Hospital – Mayo Clinic, NY

The troubling part of the OPTN proposed policy on these transplants is that it would make reporting one’s residency and citizenship voluntary. In some ways, the proposed policy could be viewed as trying to minimize or hide these numbers from the American public. After all, foreigners who travel to the US for a transplant pay full freight; why wouldn’t centers want to encourage the practice and maximize their bottom lines?

So what if nearly 700 US citizens were denied transplants of their own?

*bearing in mind that some centers do a huge number of transplants every year.

**might want to review the 2006 scandal at UPMC regarding their liver transplant program.

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