U.S. Government to Overhaul Troubled Organ Transplant System
The U.S. government has announced a plan to revamp the nation's organ transplant system, which has long been plagued by issues such as long wait times and damage to organs. As of now, approximately 104,000 people in the United States are waiting for an organ transplant, with 17 people dying every day while waiting for
an organ. However, experts believe that the current system is ineffective, and typically benefits wealthy white people who have the resources to travel to areas where organs are available.To address the issue, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has outlined a plan that would nearly double the funding the agency receives from the U.S.
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government, to $67 million in the fiscal year 2024, to modernize the nation's transplant system. According to Dr. Stuart Knechtle, a general surgeon at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina, "there are multiple problems that need to be addressed," with different groups of people being served differently by race and geographic
location.The current system is outdated, based on a model from the 1980s. The new program would provide patients with more timely information, enabling them to take greater control over the transplant process. It would also address equity issues, where people who should be referred for a transplant are overlooked or given access to care too late.