Liver Transplant Transplant Services

How Organs Are Allocated

The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) is federally contracted to maintain the database of all patients waiting for transplant in the US and to set the policies on organ allocation. On a local level, California Transplant Donor Network (CTDN) is the federally designated Organ Procurement Organization (OPO) that coordinates organ procurement for Stanford, UCSF and California Pacific Medical Center.

When a donor organ becomes available, it is offered to the sickest person in the local area first. If a good match is not found locally, the organ is then offered regionally, then nationally. To identify who the sickest patients are, UNOS uses the Model for End Stage Liver Disease (MELD) scores.

After completing the Pre Transplant Evaluation process, accepted transplant candidates are listed with UNOS according to blood type (O, A, B and AB), acceptable body size and age range of donor, and disease Severity Measure (MELD score).

Once you are listed with UNOS, you will need to maintain contact with us and keep up with your clinic visits and lab work. It is important to obtain laboratory tests periodically to update your MELD score.

Learn more about preparing for surgery.

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