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How the system functions. The roles of the United Network of Organ Sharing, the organ procurement and transplantation network, and the organ procurement organization in heart transplantation



How the system functions. The roles of the United Network of Organ Sharing, the organ procurement and transplantation network, and the organ procurement organization in heart transplantation



Critical Care Nursing Clinics of North America 12(1): 11-21



Have the limits for suitable recipient candidates for heart transplantation been exceeded? Does the current legislation and policy instituted at all levels, from DHHS to individual transplant programs, critically address the use of a dangerously limited resource? These and other questions must be the focus of future discussions regarding equitable and efficient heart transplantation in this country. The past has shown that many individuals working cooperatively within committees at federal and organizational levels have already made great strides in making organ transplantation a successful reality. Many factors influence the broadening gap between supply and demand. Each level of the system can make contributions that bring positive and creative solutions to old and new problems. Each team and committee must continue to demand representation from diverse, yet attentive, members to ensure that the specific needs of the thoracic organ recipients are properly reviewed and addressed. UNOS and its membership must continue to work together to meet the challenges of the growing acceptance of organ transplantation and the limited supply of donor organs. Continued efforts of politicians, health care professionals, and the general public must seek newer and more creative ways to manage the critical organ shortage and the ever-growing population of patients who seek heart transplantation as the only viable treatment option for their disease process. OPOs must continue their efforts to educate and promote organ donation and continue to work diligently toward increasing the pool of acceptable organ donors through improved patient management and the development of improved preservation and transport techniques. The transplant community must take the initiative to modify current legislation and to author new legislation to serve as better representors for the transplant patient population that desperately needs it.

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Accession: 046281849

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PMID: 11051915


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