Kidney Transplant Tops in the Nation, Times Two
MADISON - For the second year in a row, the nationally renowned transplant program at UW Hospital and Clinics is the number one kidney and kidney-pancreas transplant program in the United States, based on the number of transplants performed.
According to figures compiled by the United Network of Organ Sharing (UNOS), UW surgeons transplanted 346 kidneys in calendar year 2006 - 18 more than the University of Alabama-Birmingham, the second-place center - and 36 simultaneous kidney-pancreases.
Dr. Hans Sollinger, chairman of organ transplantation at UW Hospital and Clinics, cites multiple factors for his program’s success, beginning with the work of the UW’s Organ Procurement Organization, led by Dr. Anthony D’Alessandro. Sollinger also notes strong support to increase organ donation efforts from Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle and former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson, whose work as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services led to the National Collaborative, a successful national organ-donation campaign. Wisconsin recently achieved an impressive 50 percent organ donation intent rate among its citizens.
“All these factors have come together to bring us to the top of the nation,” says Sollinger. “We’re justifiably very proud of that.”
Dr. D’Alessandro agrees, and notes one more key player: the donors themselves.
“Our number one ranking would not be possible without the generosity of so many families who made the decision to give life during one of the most difficult times in their lives, as they were losing a loved one,” he says. “The legacy of their loved one lives on in those who have received these miracles of life.”
The national top-program ranking is just one of several milestones UW’s transplant program expects to hit this year. Within the next month, Sollinger expects his program to perform its 1,000th simultaneous kidney-pancreas transplant, making it the first program in the nation to achieve this milestone.
Date published: 9/14/2007
Date Published: 12/28/2007