United Network for Organ Sharing commends congressional passage of a bill that will now extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive medications for kidney recipients for the entire life of their transplant. This action means kidney recipients covered by Medicare will no longer see their coverage expire after three years for medications vital to keeping a functioning transplant.
Most importantly, it will give kidney recipients a better chance to live longer and with an enhanced quality of life. It also will reduce the burden to U.S. taxpayers of additional medical costs incurred when kidney recipients return to dialysis due to early organ rejection. The Congressional Budget Office forecasts savings to Medicare of $400 million over the first ten years, funds that could be reallocated to support other important health care priorities.
UNOS, alongside many organizations advocating for kidney patients and involved in transplant care, has long advocated for this measure. It will further enhance the ability of the transplant system to save and improve lives.