A one-day centralized work-up for kidney transplant recipient candidates: a quality improvement report

Am J Kidney Dis. 2012 Aug;60(2):288-94. doi: 10.1053/j.ajkd.2012.04.008. Epub 2012 May 8.


Background: Waiting time for a kidney transplant is calculated from the date the patient is placed on the UNOS (United Network for Organ Sharing) waitlist to the date the patient undergoes transplant. Time from transplant evaluation to listing represents unaccounted waiting time, potentially resulting in longer dialysis exposure for some patients with prolonged evaluation times. There are established disparities demonstrating that groups of patients take longer to be placed on the waitlist and thus have less access to kidney transplant.

Study design: Quality improvement report.

Setting & participants: 905 patients from a university-based hospital were evaluated for kidney transplant candidacy, and analysis was performed from July 1, 2004, to January 31, 2010.

Quality improvement plan: A 1-day centralized work-up was implemented on July 1, 2007, whereby the transplant center coordinated the necessary tests needed to fulfill minimal listing criteria.

Outcome: Time from evaluation to UNOS listing was compared between the 2 cohorts. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were created to assess the relative hazards of waitlist placement comparing 1-day versus conventional work-up and were adjusted for age, sex, race, and education.

Results: Of 905 patients analyzed, 378 underwent conventional evaluation and 527 underwent a 1-day center-coordinated evaluation. Median time to listing in the 1-day center-coordinated evaluation compared with conventional was significantly less (46 vs 226 days, P < 0.001). On multivariable analysis controlling for age, sex, and education level, the 1-day in-center group was 3 times more likely to place patients on the wait list (adjusted HR, 3.08; 95% CI, 2.64-3.59). Listing time was significantly decreased across race, sex, education, and ethnicity.

Limitations: Single center, retrospective. Variables that may influence transplant practitioners, such as comorbid conditions or functional status, were not assessed.

Conclusions: A 1-day center-coordinated pretransplant work-up model significantly decreased time to listing for kidney transplant.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation* / standards
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Preoperative Care / methods*
  • Preoperative Care / standards
  • Process Assessment, Health Care / organization & administration*
  • Quality Improvement
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Waiting Lists*