Lack of Progress Seen in Black-White Kidney Transplant Rate Ratios

A recent study published in JAMA Network Open suggests that there has been little improvement in the racial disparity regarding living donor kidney transplants (LDKT) for patients with kidney failure. The research, conducted by a team led by Lisa M. McElroy, M.D. from Duke University School of Medicine, examined data from an 11-year period from 2008 to 2018. The study found no substantial improvement in the observed or adjusted Black-White mean LDKT rate ratios (RRs), with an RR of 1 indicating racial equity.

The final cohorts consisted of 394,625 wait-listed adults, with 33.1 percent being Black and 66.9 percent being White. Additionally, there were 57,222 adult LDKT recipients, with 14.1 percent being Black and 85.9 percent being White. After considering various factors, the researchers concluded that the estimated yearly center-level RRs between Black and White individuals ranged from 0.0557 in 2008 to 0.771 in 2018. The study also estimated that in 2018, there could have been an increase of 423 LDKTs for Black patients and 1,838 for White patients, compared to the observed numbers of 582 and 3,837 LDKTs, respectively.

In order to achieve racial equity in living donor kidney transplants, the authors of the study argue that tailored interventions and goal-setting based on center-specific barriers are necessary. The findings highlight the importance of identifying LDKT rate ratios related to referral region conditions in order to address disparities and improve outcomes for all patients with kidney failure.

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