Amount is one of the largest ARPA allocations awarded to a single nonprofit in the state to date
Nevada Donor Network (NDN) is pleased to announce it has been awarded $15 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds from the State of Nevada, one of the largest amounts awarded to a single nonprofit organization by the Interim Finance Committee to date. The funding will support the creation of the Nevada Transplant Institute (NTI), which will collaborate with NDN, academic institutions, hospitals, payers, transplant centers and community healthcare providers in a singular, dedicated network to expand transplantation programs and services throughout Nevada.
“I want to personally thank Governor Steve Sisolak and the members of the Interim Finance Committee for supporting our vision with this monumental funding of our groundbreaking initiative. This giant leap will help Nevada achieve greater equity and access for those waiting for a second chance at life and health through organ donation and transplantation by improving our healthcare infrastructure,” said Nevada Donor Network President and CEO Joe Ferreria.
The NTI will elevate all healthcare in Nevada and serve to correct health disparities in access within the diverse populations in desperate need of transplantation related services. This funding will go towards NDN’s $35 million ‘End the Wait’ capital campaign launched in 2019, which is raising the funds necessary to expand upon the current kidney transplant program at University Medical Center and create a first-of-its-kind liver transplant program in Nevada. Specifically, the $15 million award will support the first phase of NTI’s initiative by:
- Funding the required liver transplants in order to gain certification as a program by the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
- Funding the necessary infrastructure modifications and improvements in Las Vegas and Reno to deploy the statewide NTI, which will also include a strategy to reach rural areas of Nevada.
Once fully funded, Nevada Donor Network Foundation (NDNF), in partnership with NDN, will recruit qualified physicians, nurses and allied health professionals to Nevada to expand transplantation services for the state. It is estimated that within 12 months this program will be fully operational and self-sustaining by month 25. Nevada residents in need of advanced liver care including transplantation will no longer have to seek life-saving care in surrounding states, which will alleviate the financial, physical, and emotional burden for critically ill patients and their families.
“Right now, more than 90% of recovered organs are sent out of state and all Nevadans in need of transplants other than kidneys must seek care at transplant centers outside of Nevada, creating undue financial and emotional hardships for patients and their families,” said Nevada Donor Network Foundation President Steven Peralta. “The Nevada Transplant Institute will allow us to better serve heroic organ donors, their courageous families and the potential recipients who wait for the gift of life and health in our community.”
Currently, all transplant centers across the country are affiliated with hospitals, hospital systems or universities which are beholden to financial and governing restraints by the parent institution, which can lead to organ rationing or missed transplantation opportunities, especially impacting culturally and socioeconomically diverse populations. Conversely, NTI’s strategy for the development of a robust transplantation ecosystem is predicated on establishing Las Vegas and Reno as regional healthcare destinations while recognizing the need to enhance the economic vitality of the region’s healthcare sector. The NTI will be a network of hospitals, providers and payers working together to partner with existing hospital systems and infrastructure while leveraging healthcare services that are currently available and in place throughout the state.
The American Rescue Plan Act was instituted by the federal government to change the course of the pandemic and deliver immediate and direct relief to families and workers impacted by the COVID-19 crisis through no fault of their own. The city of Las Vegas received $131 million in funding to support causes, issues and groups who have been most impacted by the pandemic.
For more information on the Nevada Transplant Institute and the “End the Wait” capital campaign, please visit https://www.nvdonor.org/end-the-wait.
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