In the US, standardized protocols or best practices (see Best Practices in Donation Process below) in organ donation have been jointly developed by the OPOs and their partnering hospitals.
OPOs invest considerable resources in training hospital staff in following these best practices, about their roles in the organ donation process, and on how to eliminate errors in patient care that may jeopardize the potential for donation.
In recent years critical pathways for organ donation have been developed to preserve the opportunity for donation.
Critical pathways, also called “clinical pathways” or “care maps,” help standardize medical care, reduce variability, and improve outcomes of medical procedures .
Specifically, we examined the effect of process breakdowns on two stages in the organ donation process: (1) eligible decedent’s family agrees to donation and (2) organs from the donor are transplanted.
Research Paper On Organ Donation
We note that, for reporting purposes, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) identifies an organ donor as an eligible decedent whose family has authorized recovery of organs for transplantation.Decedent’s age is a strong predictor of likelihood of donation and the number of organs transplanted from a donor. Eliminating breakdowns in the donation process can potentially increase the number of organs available for transplant but some organs will still be lost.The success of organ transplants in treating end-stage organ failure has led to an unprecedented demand for transplantable organs that unfortunately remain in short supply.A retrospective analysis of decedents was conducted using data from the Center for Organ Recovery and Education (CORE), an independent OPO that serves western Pennsylvania and most of West Virginia.All deaths from January 1st 2010 through December 31st 2012 were considered for the analysis.Decedents who had died a CMS-defined “eligible death” were included in the analyses.CMS defines eligible death as a brain-dead individual up to age 70 who does not exhibit any of the exclusionary conditions (active infections, cancers, etc.) listed in CMS Conditions for Coverage for the OPOs (42 CFR §486.302).In the US (1997–1999), there were estimated 40,610 brain-dead potential organ donors but only 17,127 actual donors .Poor relationship between key organizations including organ procurement organizations (OPOs) and hospitals in their donation service area (DSA) is one of the several reasons for this tragic loss of donors .For each eligible decedent, information was retrieved on age, gender, race, hospital where death occurred, organ donor status, whether the decedent had joined the state donor registry (registered decedent), organs transplanted, and whether there was a process breakdown.The outcome variable of interest is the number of organs transplanted from an eligible decedent.