Kidney and Pancreas Transplant

When it comes to your choice for care in receiving a kidney or pancreas transplant, the University of Iowa Organ Transplant Center offers many benefits for adult and pediatric patients. In addition to our longstanding record of excellent patient outcomes and our commitment to your health, the University of Iowa kidney and pancreas transplant services offer:

  • A multidisciplinary transplant team
  • Coordinated care and communication with your referring physicians
  • Streamlined evaluation requiring only one visit to University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics
  • Quick decision for transplant readiness and shorter wait times for organ
  • Lifelong post-transplant monitoring and care

Your best choice

The University of Iowa Organ Transplant Center is nationally recognized as one of the leading centers for kidney and pancreas transplants with a long record of outstanding patient outcomes. 

  • Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Blue Distinction Center®
  • SRTR Rankings: Top 10 in the country for best graft survival rates
  • Named a Transplant Access Program by Optum Health Care
  • National center for atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) care

Our results have been consistently outstanding, and the average waiting time for a kidney or pancreas transplant at University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics is much shorter than the national average.

The program’s nationally recognized faculty members provide the complete range of advanced medical and surgical options for patients with renal failure. This includes an active living donor renal transplant program with laparoscopic donor nephrectomy for kidney donors. This minimally invasive procedure results in more rapid recovery with most living donors going home after 48 hours.

Iowa’s only Blue Designation Center® for transplant

Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield has recognized the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics as a Blue Distinction Center® for delivering quality transplant care.

Blue Distinction Centers® have demonstrated the delivery of quality specialty care based on objective, transparent measures for patient safety and health outcomes that were developed with input from the medical community. UI Hospitals & Clinics is the only Iowa health system to receive this designation.

The personal side of your care

We work hard to assure your comfort during your evaluation, waiting period, and throughout the transplant process.

During your transplant and recovery, family members will likely spend time in the Iowa City area to follow you through your care. Our patients and families will find many lodging, dining, and shopping choices conveniently located just a few minutes from the hospital. Our program social workers are available to assist you in navigating this stressful time.

Program highlights

Receiving a kidney or pancreas transplant at the UI Organ Transplant Center is an outstanding choice. There are many benefits to receiving your transplant care at a fully integrated, multidisciplinary Organ Transplant Center.

  • Streamlined communication and coordination throughout your evaluation, transplant surgery, and follow-up care.
  • Dedicated nephrologists, endocrinologists, and surgeons with focused specialty training in transplantation.
  • You will be assigned to a transplant certified nursing coordinator for all phases of your pre- and post-transplant care.
  • Monthly patient support group meeting for both pre- and post-transplant patients and their families.
  • Full-time clinical psychologist experienced in the care of transplant candidates and recipients.
  • Dedicated infectious disease physician with focused specialty training in transplantation.
  • Specialized kidney and pancreas pathologists experienced in biopsy review of pre- and post-transplant samples.

Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Patient Outcomes

Source: Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients 07/01/2018-03/12/2020, 6/13/2020-12/31/2020
  UI Health Care National
1 year post-transplant graft (organ) survival 91.30% 96.16%
1 year post-transplant patient survival 91.30% 97.71%

Kidney Transplant Patient Outcomes

Source: Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients 07/01/2018-03/12/2020, 6/13/2020-12/31/2020
  UI Health Care National
1 year post-transplant graft (organ) survival 95.10% 95.19%
1 year post-transplant patient survival 98.28% 97.16%

Care Team

Every member of our multidisciplinary team specializes in transplant care. Each one brings years of expertise to your transplant case.

Assistant Nurse Manager

  • Andrea Koehler, RN, BSN

Nurse Coordinators

  • Rachel Goetzinger, RN, BSN
  • Brittany LeMaster, RN, BSN
  • Leslie McCloy, RN, MNHP, CCTC
  • Emelia McKnight, RN, MSN
  • Kara Merritts, RN, BSN
  • Theresa Moore, RN, MSN
  • Katie Rajcevich, RN, BSN
  • Blake Shebek, RN, BSN
  • Melissa Thompson, RN, BSN
  • Brynn Timm, RN, BSN

Social Workers

  • Tarrah Cassens, LMSW
  • Amy Lemke, MSW, NSW-C, LISW, LCSW
  • Erica Morris, MSW, LISW

Administrative Services Manager

  • Beth Schenkel

Financial Coordinators

  • Taylor Casey
  • Israel A. Cuevas
  • David Dohrer