With the goal of reducing the number of people on long organ transplant waiting lists, the American Transplant Foundation and its supporters focus on facilitating living donor transplants for patients in need. The foundation embraces the belief that no one should die while waiting for a transplant, and provides extensive financial aid for patients and living donors, reimbursing them for wages lost, as well as for the cost of medication and other necessities. Additionally, its membership works toward providing better public education and increasing awareness about issues associated with organ transplants and related public policy.
On its website, the foundation offers extensive information about the transplant process, including answers to questions frequently asked by the public. Topics include heart, lung, kidney, and liver transplants, and discussions cover patient eligibility, the procedures associated with waiting lists, the transplant procedure itself, risks, medications, and recovery.
For example, a candidate for a kidney transplant needs to know that many factors determine his or her placement on a donor waiting list. These include the severity of the patient’s physical condition, as well as blood and tissue types, time already spent on the waiting list, and closeness to a potential donor. Children under 11 years old receive extra consideration. Patient income, ethnic background, and personal status play no part in positioning.