COVID-19 update: Feb. 11, 2021

COVID-19 update: Feb. 11, 2021

New requirements for COVID-19 testing data collection in DonorNet®

As of Jan. 27, DonorNet now requires users to report if COVID-19 testing was performed on the donor. Prior to sending electronic organ offers, OPO members must answer the question, “Was COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) testing performed on the donor?” The question was added to the donor record in April 2020 and appears under the “Infectious Diseases” tab in DonorNet. Read more about the change.


Reminders

Emergency policy actions remain in effect

The following measures, originally enacted as emergency policy actions and intended to be time-limited during the pandemic declaration, remain in effect for now, subject to ongoing OPTN executive committee review for their applicability and effectiveness:

  • Updates to candidate data: Transplant hospitals unable to bring candidates in for updated lab testing are allowed to use previously reported results for that candidate. This only applies to candidates already on the waiting list.
  • Modifications to reporting wait time initiation for kidney transplant candidates who are not on dialysis: Transplant programs may apply to retroactively initiate candidate’s waiting time.
  • Relax data submission requirements for follow-up forms: Required submission of some TIEDI forms is temporarily suspended. Graft failure and death are still required to be reported during the amnesty period.

Despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, transplant programs have voluntarily completed 86 percent of the follow-up forms listed below during the period in which the data submission relaxation emergency policy has been in place:

  • Living donor follow-up form (LDF)
  • Organ-specific transplant recipient follow-up form (TRF)
  • Recipient malignancy form (PTM)

These data are critical to understanding transplant outcomes and determining any needed additions or changes to policy requirements for potential donors and recipients with a history of COVID-19.

Amnesty summary report available

UNOS has prepared a report transplant programs can access in the UNetSM data services portal to view the degree of form completion their program has currently achieved under the emergency action, as well as comparative data to put in context with transplant programs nationwide. UNOS has emailed transplant program directors and administrators with a customized summary for their program and will continue to provide periodic updates. Transplant program staff may also access the report from the data services portal by selecting Data Quality and Amnesty Summary Report.

The board strongly encourages transplant programs to continue providing these forms whenever possible. In addition to deciding when to repeal the relaxation, the executive committee will continue to consider which data will require retrospective data submission at a later date.

Updated daily: See the latest data on organ donation and transplant in the U.S.

High-level data on transplants, deceased donors recovered, patients added to the waitlist and patients temporarily moved to inactive waitlist status.

Public comment open: Provide your feedback

Now open until March 23. Read the policy proposals and papers, view proposal summaries, watch an educational video, and review presentations on the OPTN website. The OPTN committees value your input and consider all comments when developing final proposals to submit to the OPTN Board of Directors. Read more about the policy development process.


Resources

COVID-19 vaccine webinar for patients: Answering the vaccine-related questions you have been asking, UNOS Chief Medical Officer David Klassen, M.D., addresses COVID-19 concerns for organ donation and transplantation.

New AST COVID-19 transplant handouts: Created on Jan. 25, AST has new resources for recipients and candidates, including:

  • Home Monitoring for COVID-19 Exposure or Infection
  • COVID-19 Home Monitoring Guide and Log
  • What Should I Do if I Have COVID-19?
  • Safer Living During COVID-19: Tips for Transplant Patients

COVID-19: Vaccine FAQ: American Society of Transplantation

COVID-19 infections among recent organ recipients: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Questions

For COVID-19 related policy and operational questions, email member.questions@unos.org

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