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More than 100,000 people nationwide are waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant, and more than half of those patients are people of color. That’s because some diseases of the kidney, heart, lung, pancreas and liver that are best treated through transplantation are found more frequently in these communities.

For example, minority communities are three times more likely to suffer from end-stage renal disease than Caucasians. Although it’s possible for a candidate to match a donor from another racial or ethnic background, transplant success rates increase when organs are matched between people of the same ethnic background.

A lack of organs donated by multicultural communities can contribute to longer waiting periods for transplantation.

“I didn’t know anything about transplants or anything. I was just going along with my treatments and continuing to work and to have a positive attitude… But I’m thinking at the same time, ‘Am I gonna have to do this for the rest of my life?’”

– Jamie Taylor, Kidney Recipient

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