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FAQs about Transplant Surgery at Methodist Dallas Medical Center

The prospect of an organ transplant may seem overwhelming. To help you feel better prepared and more informed, The Transplant Institute at Methodist Dallas has provided answers to these frequently asked questions.

What kind of transplants are performed at the Methodist Dallas Transplant Institute?

Several types of transplants are performed at The Transplant Institute at Methodist Dallas including kidney transplants, liver transplants, and pancreas transplants. In addition, Methodist Dallas Medical Center is one of the few transplant centers in the Southwest that transplants high-risk patients.

How long will I have to stay in the hospital?

The average length of a transplant stay at Methodist Dallas is four to seven days after the organ transplant surgery. Patients will return to The Transplant Institute at Methodist Dallas for routine evaluations during post-transplant care, but these exams do not require overnight stays.

How long will I have to wait for an organ?

Currently, more than 3,800 Texans are waiting for a kidney. Our wait-list times are slightly shorter than the national United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) published wait times. The best way to avoid a prolonged wait for a kidney is to have a living donor. You can also help lower wait times by encouraging others to donate organs and help save a life.

Where can my relatives stay during the process?

Methodist Dallas Medical Center offers guest suites for family members. We also have programs with nearby hotels for people who wish to stay outside the hospital. Visit the Housing section of our site for more information.

What types of insurance cover organ transplants?

If you have private insurance, your policy may cover most of your organ transplant expenses. You should review your policy carefully to find out about your coverage. Some form of medical insurance is absolutely necessary to have a transplant. Also, the medications required after transplant are expensive, so it is important that you stay insured. The Methodist Dallas Transplant Institute will work with you and your insurance company to help make the insurance reimbursement process go smoothly. Medicare covers all types of transplants, but a supplement will help with expenses. Medicare now pays 80 percent of the cost of medications as long as you are a Medicare recipient. Our insurance coordinators will obtain approval from Medicare and/or your insurance company. The process can take a few weeks, so it is important to submit your paperwork promptly and completely. Social workers and financial specialists at the Methodist Dallas Transplant Institute are available to help you with financial and insurance concerns and can help you through the financial process. Visit the Financial Options section of our site for more information.

If a living donor donates the organ, who pays the donor’s expenses?

Potential living donors must apply for financial approval, just as potential recipients do. An application form must be filled out and sent to the Methodist Dallas Transplant Institute. The organ donor’s insurance carrier will be contacted for information about coverage.

If there is no coverage for the living donor within a private insurance policy, Medicare has a program to cover these expenses. Some expenses are not covered, such as transportation to the hospital and evaluation sites or days off from work for the testing and transplant.

If I am from out of town, what expenses will I have after I leave the hospital?

After you leave the hospital following organ transplant surgery, we recommend that you stay in the Dallas area for four to six weeks. Associated expenses will include lodging, transportation, and food. Some private insurance companies will help with these expenses; Medicare and Medicaid will not.

The Transplant Institute at Methodist Dallas transplant office can help you find accommodations in Dallas. We’ve arranged special rates for our patients at several hotels. If you have relatives or friends in the Dallas area, you might consider staying with them for a few weeks.

How long is Medicare in effect after my transplant?

Medicare coverage ends 12 months after maintenance dialysis is no longer needed, or 36 months after the month of a kidney transplant. Medicare will continue past the 36 months if you are receiving Social Security disability benefits.

Can Texas Kidney Health Care help if I need a kidney transplant?

Texas Kidney Health Care is a state program for permanent Texas residents. This program may help with medications and transportation. The social worker at your dialysis center can discuss specific benefits with you and help you fill out an application.