Johns Hopkins to Perform First H.I.V.-Positive Organ Transplants in U.S.

February 19, 2016

Johns Hopkins said it was set to perform the first kidney and liver transplants between H.I.V.-positive donors and H.I.V.-positive patients in the United States, a development that advocates said could create a lifesaving pipeline for H.I.V. patients while shortening organ donor waiting lists for all.

Dr. Dorry Segev, an associate professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, estimated that organs from 500 to 600 H.I.V.-positive potential donors have gone to waste each year and that allowing those donations could save more than 1,000 people.

“That’d be the greatest increase in organ transplantation that we’ve seen in the past decade,” he said in an interview Tuesday.

Since 1988 until November 2013, when President Obama signed the H.I.V. Organ Policy Equity Act into law, medical facilities had been forbidden from such transplants. After receiving approval in January from the United Network for Organ Sharing, which manages the nation’s organ transplant system, Johns Hopkins was prepared to perform a transplant as soon as a suitable organ and recipient emerged, the hospital said.

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