Not-for-Profit Organization First Among All Organ Procurement Organizations in America While Providing 64% of All Lung Transplants Done at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
OneLegacy announced today that in the year just concluded it was responsible for the most lung transplants in the nation, and the most lives saved, among the national network of 58 organ procurement organizations serving all of America.
OneLegacy is the not-for-profit organ, eye and tissue recovery organization serving seven Southern California counties. In 2020 it recovered 313 lungs from generous donors, and these lungs were transplanted into 171 recipients. Most lungs are transplanted en bloc, meaning both lungs are transplanted into the same recipient. A lung transplant replaces diseased lungs with healthy lungs and in doing so saves lives and/or improves quality of life—the ability to breathe and be active—for people who have severe or advanced chronic lung conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis and pulmonary fibrosis.
Of particular note, in 2020 OneLegacy provided 64% of all the lung transplants done at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. The 121 lungs transplanted at UCLA was a 30% increase over the prior year and the third most lung transplants anywhere in the nation.
“We have been in uncharted territories in screening donors and recipients in order to successfully and safely perform a transplant during COVID-19,” said Abbas Ardehali, M.D., professor of surgery and medicine at UCLA School of Medicine and director of UCLA’s heart, lung and heart/lung transplant programs. “The great cooperation we received in working with OneLegacy and our regional organ procurement organizations was critical to safely increasing organ donation and transplantation during the pandemic. We know this was a challenge, especially with DCD (donation after cardiac death) donors; but OneLegacy did it safely, and that made transplant possible.”
The announcement of OneLegacy’s lung transplant performance is part of its record-setting 2020, which saw the organization lead the nation in deceased donor organ transplants. In 2020, OneLegacy enabled the transplant of a record 1,661 organs from 548 donors. This marks the sixth consecutive year of record-breaking increases in lifesaving and healing organ donation and transplantation. In addition, more than 190,000 lives were healed; and their vision was restored through cornea and tissue donation in 2020—a number especially impressive given the COVID-caused ban on elective procedures.
“We are particularly proud that the generous act of donation and transplantation was able to continue in earnest during the pandemic and the uncertainty caused by COVID-19,” said OneLegacy CEO Tom Mone. “Even as the pandemic has raged, health care providers, donor families, recipients and transplant colleagues have been committed to continuing to recognize the importance of fulfilling the wishes of donors and enabling donation. We owe them a world of gratitude for their incredible dedication and for their continued caring about our community and our world.
“The opportunity to donate and to receive a lifesaving transplant knows no national, ethnic or religious boundaries, nor sexual orientation,” said Mone, while pointing out that one organ donor can save up to eight lives, and one tissue donor can help as many as 75 others heal. “That drives us to help every Southern Californian to choose to register to be an organ donor at the DMV and at donatelifecalifornia.org and to explore the option to be a living donor for a friend or family member.”
OneLegacy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to saving lives through organ, eye and tissue donation in seven counties in Southern California: Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara and Kern. It serves more than 200 hospitals, 10 transplant centers, a diverse population of nearly 20 million, donors and families across the region, and waiting recipients across the country.
For more information, visit onelegacy.org.
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