Race, insurance status related to likelihood of being assessed for kidney transplantation

Young black patients and patients without private health insurance are less likely to be assessed for a kidney transplant when they start dialysis, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN). These patients are also less likely to be put on the transplant waiting list and to receive a transplant.

A is the best treatment for a patient with kidney failure. When patients start dialysis, they should be assessed for a kidney transplant so they can be referred to a transplant center and be placed on the transplant waiting list if they are eligible.

In 2005, Medicare began collecting data on whether patients were informed of their transplant options when they started dialysis. When Kirsten Johansen, MD (University of California, San Francisco), Rachel Patzer, PhD (Emory University School of Medicine), and their colleagues at the USRDS Rehabilitation/Quality of Life Special Studies Center analyzed these and other data from 2005 to 2009, they found that young (< 35 years) black patients and patients without private insurance were less likely to be assessed for a transplant when they started dialysis. "This is particularly important because young kidney disease patients stand to benefit the most from a kidney transplant," said Dr. Patzer.

The investigators also found that patients who were not assessed at the start of dialysis were less likely to be put on the transplant waiting list and to receive a transplant. The findings may help partially explain the racial and socioeconomic disparities in access to that are well documented.

"Disparities in the assessment of patients for transplant could be reduced with interventions designed to encourage providers to assess patients as early as possible in the course of late-stage and diagnosis of kidney failure," said Dr. Patzer.

More information: The article, entitled "Association of Race and Insurance Type with Delayed Assessment for Kidney Transplantation among Patients Initiating Dialysis in the U.S.," will appear online on July 26, 2012, doi: 10.2215/CJN.13151211

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Racial disparities exist in access to kidney transplantation

Feb 09, 2012

A new study published in the American Journal of Transplantation reveals that racial disparities exist in both the early and late steps in access to kidney transplantation. This study is part of the February special themed ...

Racial inequalities exist for kids with kidney disease

Nov 10, 2011

Among children with kidney disease, certain races are less likely to get kidney transplants and are more likely to die than other races, according to two studies from Emory University that were presented during the American ...

Recommended for you

Motion capture examines dance techniques

Sep 29, 2014

WAAPA dance students are set to take part in a world-first biomechanical study that tracks their training, technique and injuries as they develop as professional performers.

User comments