The 8th Amendment requires that prisoners be provided a system of access to medical care. The number of inmates with ESRD is rising and the option of transplanting such individuals needs to be addressed. AIM : To study the current position and practice patterns of U.S. Transplant Centers regarding transplanting inmates. METHODS: All transplant centers in the United States listed active on the UNOS website were contacted to enquire about their position on transplanting prisoners. Three attempts were made to call all centers at the numbers listed on the UNOS website. Each center was asked a set of standard questions and responses recorded. A total of 242 transplant Centers listed as active on the UNOS website were contacted but responses could be obtained from only 146 centers. The remaining did not respond or declined to comment. 19/146 acknowledged having performed a transplant on an inmate at some point. Only 7/19 who have transplanted inmates in the past admitted to be currently involved in the process. 1 transplant center that is actively transplanting declined to comment and another hung up on the caller. 1 center only performed Living donor transplants on inmates. For centers that do not perform transplants on inmates the logistics were most common reason cited for not transplanting inmates. Others cited payments for security as a limiting factor. Some centers would allow inmates to accrue time on their list but transplant them only after their release. Many centers would be willing to transplant inmates but have never received such a request. When analyzed by UNOS regions, it appears that some regions may not have any centers that perform transplant on inmates but since some centers did not respond to our survey this cannot be completely verified. CONCLUSIONS: With ESRD reaching epidemic proportions in minorities and people of minority race now a majority in U.S jails, the issue of transplanting inmates will have to be addressed by the transplant community. Our study demonstrates that only a few centers would consider transplanting such patients and even the ones active were hesitant discussing this issue. A consensus panel is needed to address inmate rights and potential cost savings against the shortage of organs for functional members of the society.
To cite this abstract in AMA style:Qazi Y, Thomas C, Monis T, Khajawall I, Alexopoulos S, Dhanireddy K, Matsuoka L, Sher L, Qazi A, Shidban H, Smogorzewski M. Kidney Transplantation in Prisoners: Perspectives of Transplant Centers in the United States [abstract]. Am J Transplant. 2013; 13 (suppl 5). http://atcmeetingabstracts.com/abstract/kidney-transplantation-in-prisoners-perspectives-of-transplant-centers-in-the-united-states/. Accessed November 19, 2017.
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