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UMC makes major contributionto help support transplant center

Updated October 7, 2021 - 7:23 pm

University Medical Center is investing $12 million in in-kind services, programs and cash to a campaign to expand a transplantation center in Las Vegas, the Nevada Donor Network Foundation announced Wednesday.

The contribution is part of the foundation’s End the Wait capital campaign to raise $35 million to add more transplantation services and programs in Nevada. UMC is the state’s only transplantation center, providing kidney transplants. Currently, residents who need other organ, tissue and eye transplants must go to medical centers in surrounding states.

“We are extremely grateful for this $12 million investment from UMC,” Steven Peralta, president of the foundation, said in a news release. “We have $23 million more to raise to help bring more physicians and transplant experts to fully launch our virtual transplant institute to self-fund the necessary transplants. We have a vision of starting liver transplants in Nevada soon, and this commitment helps us get there.”

The campaign expects to expand the kidney transplant program and add a new liver transplant program for the first two years. Funding will primarily go to hiring transplant experts and covering the cost of the procedure and patient care until the center receives certification from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, according to the foundation.

Both groups note that expanded transplant services will add to the health care sector. National consulting firm Tripp Umbach estimated transplantation-related services could bring in $356 million annually through medical education, research and workforce development, according to the news release.

“UMC has been a long-standing partner of Nevada Donor Network, and we remain committed to improving the lives of those who are in dire need of lifesaving organ donations,” UMC CEO Mason Van Houweling said in a statement. “As the only Center of Transplantation in Nevada, UMC continues to be at the forefront of trailblazing health care and this partnership ensures patients will have the best possible outcomes right here at home.”

This story has been updated to clarify UMC’s contribution to the Nevada Donor Network Foundation’s End the Wait campaign.

McKenna Ross is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Contact her at mross@reviewjournal.com. Follow @mckenna_ross_ on Twitter.

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