Transplant trends

More deceased-donor organ transplants than ever

Thanks to the gift of life from organ donors and their families, the number of deceased organ donors and deceased-donor organ transplants performed in 2020 in the United States reached all-time highs.

News: U.S. on pace to top 40,000 transplants in a single year for first time. Read more.

More deceased-donor organ transplants than ever

Thanks to the gift of life from organ donors and their families, the number of deceased organ donors and deceased-donor organ transplants performed in 2020 in the United States reached all-time highs.

News: U.S. on pace to top 40,000 transplants in a single year for first time. Read more.

Continuous improvement

The U.S. system for organ donation and recovery is among the best in the world. But there is more that we can and must do. UNOS works with the organ donation and transplant community to drive improvement and save more lives.

12 things UNOS is doing to get the right organ to the right patient at the right time

106,738
people need a lifesaving organ transplant (total waiting list candidates). Of those, 64,031 people are active waiting list candidates. Totals as of today 6:54am EDT

2021 donors, deceased and living

13,737

donors

Total Donors January - August 2021 as of 09/22/2021

2021 transplants

28,216

transplants performed this year

Total Transplants January - August 2021 as of 09/22/2021

2020: 10th consecutive record-breaking year

More than 12,500

deceased donors in 2020

Even with a 38% increase in deceased donation over the last five years, the need for organ donors is immense.

Sign up to be an organ donor

Data reports

UNOS’ online database, UNetSM, contains Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network data regarding every organ donation and transplant event occurring in the U.S. since October 1, 1987. It enables the donation and transplantation community to cooperatively and efficiently share the limited number of donated organs.

Click below to view the type of data you want to explore.

View of OPTN metrics dashboard from June 2021

OPTN metrics dashboard for donation and transplant trends

More than 5,700

living donor transplants in 2020

The number of living donor transplants was significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since June of 2020 they have occurred at rates more similar to pre-pandemic activity.

Learn about living donation

Omar was gifted “a second shot at life” when his brother became his living liver donor.

Transplants by organ type

In total, health care teams across the country performed 39,036* transplants with organs from both deceased and living donors in 2020. Here, see the percentage change from between 2019 and 2020 by organ type.

blue circle with line icon of kidney

Kidney

red arrow pointing down

2.5%

2020: 22,817

2019: 23,401

teal circle with line icon of liver

Liver

green arrow pointing up

0.1%

2020: 8,906

2019: 8,896

red circle with line icon of heart

Heart

green arrow pointing up

3%

2020: 3,658

2019: 3,552

purple circle with line icon of lungs

Lung

red arrow pointing down

6.4%

2020: 2,539

2019: 2,714

yellow circle with line icon of pancreas

Pancreas

red arrow pointing down

5.6%

2020: 135

2019: 143

light blue circle with line icon of a kidney and a pancreas

Kidney-pancreas

red arrow pointing down

5.2%

2020: 827

2019: 872

magenta circle with line icon of intestines

Intestine

green arrow pointing up

12.3%

2020: 91

2019: 81

reddish-purple circle with line icon of heart and lungs

Heart-lung

green arrow pointing up

28.9%

2020: 58

2019: 45

brown-green circle with letters VCA

Vascular composite allograft

red arrow pointing down

66.7%

2020: 5

2019: 15

*Based on OPTN data as of June 17, 2021. Data subject to change based on future data submission or correction.

Share This