U.S. Organ Procurement Organizations Recovered Over 43,000 Organs Which Were Successfully Transplanted in 2023, Marking Thirteen Years of Consistent Growth in Deceased Donation

Annual data indicates OPOs drove rise in recoveries and transplants, far exceeding benchmark set by Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services

MCLEAN, Va., Jan. 11, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. organ procurement organizations (OPOs) recovered 43,000 organs that resulted in life-saving transplants in 2023, according to recently released data from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network. This milestone accounts for an average of 128 organ transplants each day from over 16,000 heroic donors and was achieved despite nationwide trends of organ non-utilization.

The data demonstrates strong OPO performance year over year, including a 9.4% increase in organs successfully transplanted from deceased donors and a 9.6% increase in deceased donation from 2022 to 2023. This data shows significant growth with 46 of 56 OPOs increasing donation rates from the previous year. The transplantation of 43,603 organs from deceased donors in 2023 exceeds the benchmark set by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services in 2020 of 41,000 annual transplants by the end of 2026.

"Our member OPOs work tirelessly to honor the wishes of thousands of donors and their families with care and sensitivity," said Colleen McCarthy, President of the Association of Organ Procurement Organization (AOPO) and Vice President of Organ and Tissue Donation at Versiti Wisconsin. "Their role in the donation process is critical to the system's strength, saving and healing tens of thousands of lives each year. We look forward to another year of working together with all stakeholders to ensure 2024 is even more successful."

This achievement is a result of AOPO's commitment to expanding collaboration among its partners, reducing health inequities, maximizing organ utilization, and driving innovation. This milestone brings the U.S. one step closer to reaching 50,000 annual organs transplanted in 2026, a community goal set by AOPO in February 2021.

As AOPO strives for ongoing growth in 2024, we will continue advocating for improvements that address critical issues hindering transplantation nationwide. The rate of organ non-utilization in the U.S. rose once again in 2023, with 28% of kidneys recovered by OPOs declined for organ transplantation. Non-utilization presents an enormous challenge to patients and medical professionals, accounting for thousands of unused organs each year that could have saved lives.

A 2022 report by the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) outlined the impacts of non-utilization on the many patients awaiting lifesaving organ transplants. Endorsed by the organ transplant community as a blueprint for systemwide reform, the NASEM report proposes transformative solutions to be undertaken by all stakeholders, including new standards for evaluation, expedited transportation, and greater patient involvement in the transplant decision-making process.

"OPOs continue to push to achieve even higher levels of success in organ donation, but true progress in saving more lives through organ transplantation can only be achieved through alignment across the system," said Steve Miller, Chief Executive Officer of AOPO. "Collaboration between OPOs, donor hospitals, transplant centers, and transplant surgeons will help us reach our shared mission of saving as many lives as possible through the precious gift of organ donation."

About the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations (AOPO)
The Association of Organ Procurement Organizations (AOPO) is the not-for-profit trade association leading the nation's organ donation community to save and improve lives through organ, eye, and tissue donation. Founded in 1984, AOPO advances organ donation and transplantation by driving continual improvement of the donation process, collaborating with stakeholders, and sharing successful practices with its 48 member OPOs. AOPO envisions a future where every opportunity for donation results in lives saved. For more information, please visit www.aopo.org.

Contact Information:
Jenny Daigle | jdaigle@aopo.org

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SOURCE Association of Organ Procurement Organizations