Study reveals details behind transplant disparities experienced by black patients

October 25, 2020

Highlights Washington, DC (October 25, 2020) -- Studies have observed that Black patients are less likely to receive kidney transplants than white patients, but it's not clear when during the transplant evaluation process this disparity occurs. Research that will be presented online during ASN Kidney Week 2020 Reimagined October 19-October 25 indicates that the disparity arises after physicians refer patients for transplantation.

The analysis included 60,229 patients (23,499 Black and 36,730 white) who started dialysis between 2015 and 2018 at a large dialysis organization.

Compared with whites, Black patients were 23% more likely to be referred for transplantation. Among referred patients, Black patients were 19% less likely to be placed on a waitlist than whites. Among wait-listed patients, Black patients were 52% less likely to receive a transplant than whites. Overall, Black patients were 54% less likely to receive transplants than white patients.

"We found that Black patients were actually more likely to be referred to a transplant center after starting dialysis, compared with white patients; however, they were less likely to be waitlisted for a transplant after referral, and less likely to receive a transplant once waitlisted," said lead author Steven M. Brunelli, MD, MSCE (DaVita Clinical Research). "Racial disparities seem to emerge beginning at the listing stage and carry through the organ allocation stage."
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Study: "Exploration of Racial Disparities in the Kidney Transplant Process Among Dialysis Patients"

ASN Kidney Week 2020 Reimagined, the largest nephrology meeting of its kind, will provide a forum for more than 13,000 professionals to discuss the latest findings in kidney health research and engage in educational sessions related to advances in the care of patients with kidney and related disorders. Kidney Week 2020 Reimagined will take place October 19-October 25.

Since 1966, ASN has been leading the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients. ASN has more than 21,000 members representing 131 countries. For more information, visit http://www.asn-online.org.

American Society of Nephrology

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