Living Donor Toolkit
The shortfall between the demand and availability of organs for transplantation has never been greater. In July 2020, there were close to 111,000 candidates awaiting transplantation.
In 2019, the United States performed 39,717 transplants- which would address just over 40% of the number of individuals currently waiting for an organ. These transplants were completed due to the gift of life from 19,297 organ donors in 2019, including 11,900 deceased donors and 7,397 living donors. While the numbers organ donors were the highest ever, there is still a critical shortage of organs for those in need.
Medical and psychosocial outcomes for live donors are generally quite good, and a reassuring 97.5% of live organ donors say they would donate again if they could. Living donation is a profound way to help a loved one—or even a stranger-- in need.
That said, individuals considering living donation must consider the potential medical, psychosocial, and financial impacts associated with donating an organ—and the transplant community currently lacks a centralized forum to provide education about live donation.
The AST's Living Donor Community of Practice (LDCOP), with the support of eleven other organizations, convened a Best Practices in Living Donation Consensus Conference in 2014. This conference, focusing on living kidney donation, was composed of a diverse group of transplant professionals, people with ESRD, and living donors.
A high-priority recommendation stemming from this meeting was the creation of a centralized, neutral, high-quality living kidney donor educational toolkit for those considering living kidney donation. In 2018, following this consensus conference, an engaged group of transplant experts in LDCOP published educational chapters on living kidney donation aimed at patients and professionals.
Because of the far-reaching impact of the kidney-focused toolkits, the LDCOP began expanding the toolkits to include living liver donation, with the new chapters expected in early 2022.
Medical professionals: The AST has developed Provider Toolkits as a resource for medical professionals to better inform their practices and approaches regarding living donation.