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For patients, an organ transplant can be a scary and an emotional experience. They need a lifeline, an answer, and a care team that is dedicated and persistent.
There are over 120,000 people waiting for an organ transplant at any given time. The nonprofit United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) oversees organ distribution to ensure fairness in allocation.
Unless you’ve done your research, it may be difficult to understand how one hospital could have shorter wait times than another. So we’ve made it easy. Below are the most important facts about transplant wait times at Indiana University Health. If you still have questions, call our transplant team at 800.382.4602.
Nationally Approved Quality Care
IU Health Transplant is the only Medicare approved program in Indiana for pancreas, liver and intestinal/multivisceral transplants and was the first approved kidney transplant program in the state.
Medicare approved means we have fulfilled a list of criteria required by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). This criteria includes performing a specific number of transplants while maintaining good clinical outcomes. Every program at IU Health Transplant is Medicare approved, meaning patients qualify for the benefit of Medicare Part B for transplant medications.
Members of the IU Health team travel the country to secure life-saving organs for their patients. This willingness to go out to evaluate an organ in person is unique to our program. Additionally, the IU Health Transplant program takes a second look at organs other programs reject. This commitment to finding usable organs significantly reduces our wait times.
You can count on the transplant surgeons at IU Health to always be available for surgery. We ensure every opportunity to save a life is taken advantage of by coordinating surgeon schedules. This dedication is reflected in our ranking as the number four largest transplant program in the nation. Additionally, IU Health pancreas, pancreas/kidney and intestine transplants are the largest in the country by volume.
In Indiana, we’ve pioneered many surgical techniques, including:
- The state’s first kidney transplant in 1965
- The state’s first liver transplant in 1988
- The state’s first pancreas transplant in 1988
- The state’s first intestine and multivisceral transplant in 2003
This history of experience and innovation continues today as we partner with the Indiana University School of Medicine. Our most current research projects and advanced technologies include:
- An extensive clinical database for liver, kidney, pancreas and intestinal transplant analysis, comparing health markers for donor organs and transplant recipients to ensure long-term success.
- The development of a desensitization treatment for kidney patients
- The Ackerman Xenotransplant Lab, which explores genetically engineering organs to keep people who need a liver transplant alive long enough until a human organ is available.
- Active research on the impact of obesity on organ quality and acceptance
- Active research on treatment possibilities for Hepatitis C