Kidney Allocation: Role of UNOS and OPOs

  • Patricia L. Adams
  • Walter K. Graham
  • Susan Gunderson


The UNOS is a not-for-profit, private, voluntary membership organization incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia, which qualifies as a tax exempt charity under IRC section 501(c)(3). Since 1986, it has been the sole holder of a contract from the federal government to operate the national OPTN. Its story is one of the many remarkable successes in organ transplantation.


Blood Type Transplant Center Transplant Program Organ Allocation Deceased Donor Kidney 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.




American Association of Tissue Banks


Association of Organ Procurement Organizations


Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services; one branch of HHS


calculated panel reactive antibody; measures a recipient’s preformed antibodies to donor antigens


a histocompatibility test measuring the degree to which a recipient’s immune system reacts against a donor


donation after cardiac death


electronic donor information and organ offer system

Donor swaps

when two or more recipients exchange living donors because their original donors cannot donate to them because of incompatible blood type or positive crossmatch


Department of Transplantation


designated service area


expanded criteria donor


Federal Drug Administration


Health Care Financing Administration; former name for CMS


Department of Health and Human Services


Health Resources and Services Administration; one branch of HHS; home of the DOT


Institute for Healthcare Improvement


kidney allocation system


life years from transplant


Membership and Professional Standards Committee


New England Organ Bank


National Organ and Transplant Act of 1984


organ procurement organization


Organ Procurement and Transplant Network

Organ donation conversion rate

number of actual donors as percent of eligible donors


renal replacement therapy


standard criteria donor

Sensitized candidate

has preformed anti-HLA antibodies (PRA) in the blood


South-Eastern Regional Organ Procurement Program


South-Eastern Organ Procurement Foundation


Scientific Registry for Transplant Recipients


Social Security Act

Transplant center

usually a large hospital complex where multiple types of transplants done

Transplant program

usually part of a transplant center; focused on one organ


the electronic matching system


United Network for Organ Sharing


zero mismatch; this refers to the situation when the donor has no allele which is different from the recipient even though the donor does not have all the alleles of the recipient


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag US 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia L. Adams
    • 1
  • Walter K. Graham
    • 2
  • Susan Gunderson
    • 3
  1. 1.Section on Nephrology, WFU School of MedicineWake Forest University BaptistMedical Center, Medical Center Boulevard, NC Baptist HospitalWinston-SalemUSA
  2. 2.United Network for Organ SharingRichmondUSA
  3. 3.LifeSourceSt. PaulUSA

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