Need A Kidney? OrganJet Says There's An App For That
If you've been keeping an eye out for a new kidney, boy, have we got the site for you.
The new site OrganJet has one-upped traditional organ providers, utilizing the latest technology to connect those who need kidneys with areas that have an abundance of ready-and-waiting kidneys. Every year, thousands of people die waiting for kidneys, and every year thousands of kidneys are discarded.
How is this possible? Well, donor kidneys have a short life-span. Often, they're matched up with people who need them, and the match falls through because of the age of the donor, or the state of the kidney. Donation policy at the moment is "first come, first served" — and if the organ isn't right, it's often wastefully discarded. The medical community has noted before that if a system existed to better match donor kidneys to the right kind of recipient — quickly — more kidneys would find a good home.
OrganJet is the donor community's first attempt to provide that system. If you're already listed as viable for a kidney transplant, you can visit their website, and get yourself on their list. The program is the brainchild of professor and administrator Sridhar Tayur, who studies organ allocation and saw a gap in the system. All he needed, he wrote, was a community of private jets available to fly the right recipient to the right kidney. In 2011, Tayur set up the program, obtained his jets, and in early August, OrganJet hooked up their first user to a usable kidney.
According to the press release, the client emailed the company a few days after the successful transplant: "Yes, definitely very satisfied OrganJet client." Yeah, we bet.
Estimates suggest that a system linking available kidneys to well-matched donors would result in 10,000 collective more years of life. Every year.
The United States currently operates an "opt-in" rather than "opt-out" donor registry system, which experts suggest leads to thousands of preventable deaths each year. You can opt-in and become a donor here.