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Decline in kidney transplant activity

Only 74 kidney transplants were conducted to the end of August, a trajectory that would see fewer procedures performed than in 2020.

The figure comprised 55 deceased donor and 19 living donor transplants.

A spokesperson for HSE Organ Donation and Transplant Ireland (ODTI) said it was cognisant of the “adverse impact” of Covid-19 on organ donation and transplantation. “Mitigating requirements” including additional ICU organ donation coordinators; ringfenced beds and theatre facilities; and additional renal transplant surgeons “have been discussed”
with the Department of Health.

Irish Kidney Association CEO Ms Carol Moore told this newspaper the potential for kidney transplant figures to fall even lower than last year was “very worrying”.

In 2020 the national kidney transplant programme at Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, was paused for approximately 10 weeks due to clinical and capacity factors associated with the pandemic.

During that period, it received12 donor offers from ODTI “that we regrettably were unable to convert to transplant”, according to the National Kidney Transplant Service 2020 annual report.

The number of kidney transplants performed last year (123) represented a decline of 44 on the five-year average in 2019 (167). The long-held national target is 250 kidney transplants per annum.

Overall, 190 organ transplants were conducted in 2020, compared to 274 in 2019.

A spokesperson for the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin, said heart and lung transplant activity in 2021 to date was “broadly” in line with the same period of 2020.

Up until August, 10 lung transplants, four heart transplants, and one heart and lung transplant had taken
place at the Mater. The same period of 2020 saw 10 lung transplants and seven heart transplants.

See news interview, Enhancing support and care for people with kidney disease – Medical Independent

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