Kidney transplant rules might be in for a big shake-up. The organization that oversees allocation of transplants has proposed changes that would favor giving the highest quality organs to younger, healthier people.
Right now, people register with the United Network for Organ Sharing to await a kidney from a deceased donor -- and there simply aren't enough organs to go around.
"In a perfect scenario, all who need a kidney transplant would receive one without delay," the proposal says. "However, the shortage of deceased donor organs means that most candidates for kidney transplantation have to wait, oftentimes for years before receiving a transplant.
"Some transplant candidates do not survive long enough to receive a kidney from a deceased donor and die while on the waiting list. Other candidates are fortunate to receive a kidney from a living donor. While the number of living donor transplants has increased steadily over time, even with these additional kidneys, there is not enough supply to provide a transplant to all who need one."