UW Health requires COVID-19 vaccination for transplant patients | Local news – Community News

UW Health requires COVID-19 vaccination for transplant patients | Local news

Daniel Milburn with weights (copy) (copy)

Daniel Milburn, who received a rare heart-lung transplant at UW Hospital this year, said he was exercising regularly.


UW Health joins a growing number of organ transplant programs by requiring patients to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to receive transplants or be placed on organ waiting lists.

President Joe Biden will enforce a federal mandate that employees of U.S. companies with at least 100 employees be vaccinated against COVID-19 or tested weekly beginning Jan. 4, a reprieve for companies facing labor shortages during the holiday season, U.S. officials said. Thursday. Conway G. Gittens reports.

Madison Hospital’s policy, which takes effect next Monday, requires patients on the transplant waiting list to receive a first dose of vaccine by Dec. 15 and a second dose, if needed, by Jan. 14. If not, they’ll be changed to “inactive status,” meaning they won’t receive organ offers and won’t be able to receive transplants from living donors.

People not yet on the waiting list should be vaccinated before being added to the list, UW Health said.

“This new policy reflects our commitment to patient safety and our respect for the donors and families who have made the selfless decision to give the gift of life to others,” said Dr. Dixon Kaufman, medical director of the UW Health Transplant Center, issued a statement Thursday. “It’s unfortunate that transplant recipients – because of the anti-rejection drugs they need – are at a much higher risk than others of serious illness or death from COVID-19. We believe that mandating vaccination for COVID-19, just as vaccinations are required for other infectious diseases, will give our recipients the best chance of surviving and thriving once they receive their transplant.”

Organ Centers for Transplant Patients: Getting a COVID-19 Injection or Getting on the Waiting List

Exceptions can be made for people deemed too ill to wait for the vaccination process to be completed, UW Health said. They could be put on a waiting list or given a transplant with recognition of the increased risk of serious COVID-19 infection, the hospital said. In such cases, vaccination is required after transplant surgery as soon as recommended by the medical team.

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