UTMC to resume living donor kidney transplants

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) - The University of Toledo Medical Center has received the green light to resume living donor kidney transplants.

Those procedures were voluntarily suspended Aug. 10 after a viable kidney was accidentally thrown out during a living donor transplant in July. One nurse was fired and a second resigned. A report conducted by the state found that poor oversight and communications, as well as insufficient policies, were factors in the incident.

After meeting with the United Network of Organ Sharing late last week, UNOS deemed the program fundamentally sound, allowing the program to be reinstated.

The program is officially open and UTMC is already actively working to contact and scheduled patients in need of transplants. Officials say they expect their first surgery within several weeks.

Dr. Jeffrey Gold, chancellor of biosciences and health affairs at UT, says officials thoroughly examined the procedures after the botched transplant, and after making a few changes, believe the program is ready to move forward.

"Having a very clear understanding of how a particular transplant organ is stewarded at any time, has become one of our focuses. So, for instance, using things like motion detectors and identification tagging, enhancing documentation tracking, and getting people to focus on it has become one of the areas that we have looked at," said Gold.

Gold hopes the incident will act as a lesson across the globe.

"We want to be sure that we not only make transplantation and health care safer at the University of Toledo Medical Center, but we want to be sure that the lessons that we've learned are broadly applied across solid organ transplantation across the United States and around the world," said Gold.

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