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Organ distribution

Lung policy

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Making allocation more fair and flexible

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Understand OPTN lung policy changes

For professionals

For patients

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Making lung distribution fair and equitable

In its continued drive toward increasing equity, the donation and transplant community has developed a more fair and flexible lung allocation system. On March 9, 2023, new policies replaced the previous lung allocation system.

Lungs are the first organ type to be allocated under this new framework, called continuous distribution. In continuous distribution of lungs, candidates will receive a composite allocation score, which means no single factor will determine a lung patient’s priority. Watch explanatory videos

For patients

Understand OPTN lung policy changes

Watch Dr. Budev, the Lung Committee chair, speak more on the new policy and how it was developed.

How will patients benefit?

Simulation modeling suggests that the new policy is likely to improve key measures of the lung transplant system, including:

  • Reducing patient deaths on the waiting list
  • Increasing transplant rates for the sickest candidates
  • Decreasing geographic variability in transplant rates

How did the community develop this policy?

The community was able to participate in the development of the policy through several public comment periods and online interactive values exercises. The methodology behind the exercises was a new way to collect community input early in the process.

Patients benefit from a more efficient system that gets the right organ to the right patient, at the right time.

The Board of Directors considered the community’s feedback and unanimously approved the policy in December 2021.

Learn more about the steps the Lung Committee followed to build the framework.

Lung and heart news

FAQ: New multi-organ polices in effect

The Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network Ad-hoc Multi Organ Transplantation Committee has implemented several safety net policies to ensure patients in need of multiple organ transplants to get priority when they become medically eligible.

Lung CAS summary data updated

Information for lung transplant program physicians, surgeons, transplant coordinators, program directors and data coordinators on the distribution of scores for all active registrations waiting for lung transplants in the U.S.

What happened in public comment? See what the community had to say. See comments

Essential reading and resources

For patients

For professionals

New lung policy took effect March 9, 2023

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