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President's Blog

July 30, 2013 Posted by dsalomon

Part Two of a Three-Part Series

Last week, in my very first Presidential blog post, I urged us to consider the implications of the message, "it's organ donation stupid." Supply falls short of demand. There are not enough organs to save every patient who needs one to survive. Yet despite the OPTN's system to regulate the allocation of organs, issues arise that publically contest the system. And the most recent issue became my first challenge as President of the Society.

A few weeks ago our nation took notice of a 10-year old girl with cystic fibrosis, Sarah Murnaghan, who had...

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July 23, 2013 Posted by dsalomon

Part One of a Three-Part Series

In the early 1990's a little known Governor from Arkansas was rising rapidly through his party's ranks to win the Democratic nomination for President of the United States. Upon securing the nomination, the Clinton campaign set about developing myriad strategies and policy positions in the hopes of finding a "winner" issue that would help Clinton unseat the then-incumbent President, George H. W. Bush. After examining many strategies and policy issues, there was one single mantra that political consultant James Carville repeated day after day to the...

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May 20, 2013 Posted by rmannon

As I look back over the previous 12 months, I am filled with both gratitude and pride in our leadership; how so many of our volunteers have stepped up and successfully navigated challenges and opportunities for the Society in 2012-2013. We all share the common goal of strengthening, preserving and advancing the field of organ transplantation – understanding that success and failure are never permanent and we must remain constantly vigilant and proactive to protect our field of medicine.

Although I am stepping down this week as President, I am not stepping away from the work of the...

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May 15, 2013 Posted by rmannon

As I look back over the previous 12 months, I am filled with both gratitude and pride at how so many of our volunteer leaders have stepped up and successfully navigated a variety of challenges and opportunities for the Society in 2012-2013. Among our ranks, we all share the common goal of strengthening, preserving and advancing the field of solid organ transplantation. That said, success and failure are never permanent...and it is required of us to constantly remain vigilant and proactive as the guardians of our field of medicine.

Although I am stepping down this week as President...

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April 23, 2013 Posted by rmannon

In just 4 weeks, we will convene in Seattle for the 13th meeting of the American Transplant Congress. As in years past, the organizing committee, which consists of representatives from both AST and ASTS, has put together a jam-packed program of provocative symposia, presentations and workshops on updates in current practice, new insights into alloimmune injury, and emerging research discoveries within our field.

Behind the scenes, staff in the AST offices are working tirelessly to prepare. The AST Board meeting will be the longest we’ve ever...

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March 25, 2013 Posted by rmannon

In recent weeks, some of you have reached out to me with concerns that AST has not been sufficiently involved with how the Sequester is impacting the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding budget. We are a field that is highly dependent on biomedical research and let me assure you that our AST lobbyists, Bill Applegate and Chris Rorick of Bryan Cave, continue to have research advocacy as a top priority.

For over a decade, AST has worked closely with the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives Committees on Appropriations – supporting biomedical research and connecting-the-dots...

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March 17, 2013 Posted by rmannon

Education continues to be one of the most critical needs for transplant professionals and is the number one reason why people join AST. The American Transplant Congress and the American Journal of Transplantation are two significant offerings most often appreciated by members. But we don’t rest on our laurels — instead we strive to continue to find ways to update skills, highlight critical issues and, moving forward, serve as a resource for maintenance of certification.

Over the last year, we have moved entirely to a volunteer committee responsible for the oversight of all our...

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February 18, 2013 Posted by rmannon

Last week was a big week for organ transplantation on Capitol Hill. On the heels of President Obama's State of the union address, leaders from both parties in the House and Senate introduced the:

HIV Organ Policy Equity (HOPE) Act (S. 330 and H.R. 698) - Introduced by Congresswoman Lois Capps (D-CA) and Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Rand Paul (R-KY). The bill seeks to lift the current law ban and establish a research protocol to determine the effectiveness of HIV positive-to-positive transplants, and to ensure the safety of the... Read More...
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January 23, 2013 Posted by rmannon

We begin each year with the best of intentions. We make resolutions. We vow change. We commit ourselves to improvement.

I’ve seen you.

You're in my gym each morning before dawn, taking the boot camp session with the trainer, sweating, scoping out the maniacal fitness freaks to learn their secret. Often we don't share our development goals publicly because part of us realizes that it’s going to be difficult to keep these promises. It’s that same part of us that sneaks cupcakes after dark. Sometimes, life gets in the way.

Me? These days, I've learned not to make...

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January 02, 2013 Posted by rmannon

As we begin the New Year, it’s a fitting time to update the Society on our robust advocacy activities. Public policy remains a key priority and there have been significant advancements this past year, largely thanks to the energy and passion of our team. While we’re heartened by this positive momentum, many challenges remain.

I’ve made six trips to DC since June and can attest that during that time the normal process for advancing priorities in Congress was extremely challenging. In visiting lawmakers to discuss our many issues, the single topic that overshadowed all the others...

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