Foreign Transplants

  1. 0 Happy Monday everyone!

    I had a thought run through my mind this morning as I was heading out the door to see my patients (I work home health in a large city, servicing many out of town patients). I have been seeing many patients from outside the US coming here to receive organ transplants. I'm conflicted on this practice as the organs they receive could be going to someone here but at the same time I acknowledge that all life deserves care and treatment.

    What are your thoughts? Should big wads of cash be accepted for placement on our transplant lists?
  2. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page

    About KittyLovinRN

    KittyLovinRN has '5' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Pulmonary, Lung Transplant, Med/Surg'. From 'Big City, USA'; Joined Jan '09; Posts: 126; Likes: 113.

    50 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page
    0
    I should clarify...transplant evaluations cost BIG BUCKS. Insurance usually covers but international pts pay out of pocket.
  4. Visit  AdRenaLiNeNuT profile page
    0
    How are these patients receiving these organs? From my understanding a patient is placed on the transplant list, & if an organ is available it goes to those on the top of the list. Do these out of town patients belong to a higher social class? I'm very curious to know how they are receiving organs when there are so many people that are in need of organs.
  5. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page
    0
    They come here, pay the money for evaluations, hospitalization, hotels and are placed on the list in the same way natural born citizens are. They are not necessarily back ups or anything they're just on the list and when there's a match they get the organ. But I'm torn, what if that lung could go to a teen with cystic fibrosis or that heart to a young woman who's body attacked her heart during pregnancy and is now living on an LVAD?
  6. Visit  WeepingAngel profile page
    3
    I'm imagining that it is probably safer to get these transplants in the US than whenever the patient is coming from. Just a guess, though. I thought that potential transplant recipients were prioritized according to greatest need? Could be wrong on that though.
    alibear27, GrnTea, and pblottRN like this.
  7. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page
    0
    Quote from WeepingAngel
    I'm imagining that it is probably safer to get these transplants in the US than whenever the patient is coming from. Just a guess, though. I thought that potential transplant recipients were prioritized according to greatest need? Could be wrong on that though.
    Yes they are by need but I haven't any idea who decides who has greater need.
  8. Visit  traumaRUs profile page
    1
    I work in nephrology and transplants take a LONG time to get, many years. Plus, we are not transplanting anyone who doesn't have insurance. Never heard of this....what organs, what institution is giving them away to foreigners??? Are you SURE this is happening or just that you have HEARD?
    pblottRN likes this.
  9. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page
    2
    Quote from traumaRUs
    I work in nephrology and transplants take a LONG time to get, many years. Plus, we are not transplanting anyone who doesn't have insurance. Never heard of this....what organs, what institution is giving them away to foreigners??? Are you SURE this is happening or just that you have HEARD?
    I am SURE as I have taken care of these patients since graduating. I currently have a Saudi man waiting for lungs who I am seeing for IV antibiotics. When I worked in the hospital I personally took care of these post-transplant pts. I did lung transplants and its what I continue to see.
    traumaRUs and netglow like this.
  10. Visit  Tait profile page
    1
    This is an intense topic. I started doing a little research and found a few facts here related to transplant centers:

    Though American transplant centers can list foreigners, they can make up no more than 5% of any center’s list. Most of non–U.S. citizens listed have substantial financial resources and pay in cash.

    Some transplant programs will admit illegal aliens, but most are children. Some transplant centers have caused controversy by refusing to retransplant illegal aliens whose initial organs, received at the same hospital during childhood, have failed.

    http://www.thehastingscenter.org/Pub...l.aspx?id=2198

    I would like to look further into what other countries are doing to improve and increase organ donation/management within their own systems. I can only imagine that is where the key to limiting out of country transplantations is going to occur.

    Going to keep reading and pondering this one.

    Tait
    Hoozdo likes this.
  11. Visit  KittyLovinRN profile page
    1
    Quote from Tait
    This is an intense topic. I started doing a little research and found a few facts here related to transplant centers:

    Though American transplant centers can list foreigners, they can make up no more than 5% of any center’s list. Most of non–U.S. citizens listed have substantial financial resources and pay in cash.

    Some transplant programs will admit illegal aliens, but most are children. Some transplant centers have caused controversy by refusing to retransplant illegal aliens whose initial organs, received at the same hospital during childhood, have failed.

    http://www.thehastingscenter.org/Pub...l.aspx?id=2198

    I would like to look further into what other countries are doing to improve and increase organ donation/management within their own systems. I can only imagine that is where the key to limiting out of country transplantations is going to occur.

    Going to keep reading and pondering this one.

    Tait
    Thanks for the great info Tait! I didn't have time this morning to sit down and look anything up I appreciate your efforts!
    Tait likes this.
  12. Visit  wooh profile page
    7
    An arbitrary line in the sand shouldn't condemn a person to death. I was lucky to be born north of Mexico/U.S. border and south of the Canada/U.S. border. I had no control over that, it just happened to be where my mom dropped me out at. Not sure why being lucky enough for my mom to have dropped me out at a particular longitude and latitude should make me more deserving of a life-saving organ than another human being who through no fault of their own was dropped out at a different latitude and longitude.
  13. Visit  Kunzieo profile page
    6
    It has nothing to do with "were she dropped you out" and everything to do with what country you were born in, are a citizen of, and have relationships and make contributions to.

    Do I believe that all people are equally deserving of life? You bet.

    Do I believe that life is not fair? You bet your sweet butt!

    Do I believe that the United States has a responsibility to help those in less developed countries? Not necessarily.

    I believe in helping- but I believe in helping our own people first. We gave lots of aid, including money in the tsunami disaster, for example, to help injured and homeless people that were devastated-but we still have sick, hungry, and homeless people here. We give "foreign aid" to countries in the Middle East, but our National Debt is out of control.

    So I guess my opinion on the matter is: no, non-US citizens should not be receiving the organs of US citizens, unless, for some reason, there is no one that matches, and the organ could not be used.
    Hoozdo, Hygiene Queen, roser13, and 3 others like this.
  14. Visit  xoemmylouox profile page
    0
    We have a patient who is a young child. Her family is illegal, but she is not. She received a kidney transplant from her mom and has been doing great. Perhaps some of the other foreign born patients have family donations as well??

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