Results of a data-driven performance improvement initiative in organ donation

Brianna L. Doby, Kellie Hanner, Steven Johnson, Tanjala S. Purnell, Malay B. Shah, Raymond J. Lynch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


New metrics for organ procurement organization (OPO) performance utilize National Center for Health Statistics data to measure cause, age, and location consistent (CALC) deaths. We used this denominator to identify opportunities for improved donor conversion at one OPO, Indiana Donor Network (INOP). We sought to determine whether such analyses are immediately actionable for quality improvement (QI) initiatives directed at increased donor conversion. CALC-based assessment of INOP’s performance revealed an opportunity to improve conversion of older donors. Following the QI initiative, INOP donor yield rose by 44%, while organs transplanted rose by 29%. These changes tolerated temporary disruption around the COVID-19 pandemic. Improved donor yield was primarily seen in older groups identified by CALC-based methods. Process changes in resource allocation and monitoring were associated with a 57% increase in the number of potential donors approached in the QI period and a subsequent rise in the number of potential donor referrals, suggesting positive feedback at area hospitals. Post-intervention, INOP’s projected donation performance rose from 51st to 18th among all OPOs. OPOs can use CALC death data to accurately assess donor conversion by categories including age and race/ethnicity. These data can be used in real time to inform OPO-level processes to maximize donor recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2555-2562
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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