Carolina Donor Services Uses Tracking Service to Ensure Correct Delivery of Life-Saving Organs

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Carolina Donor Services is one of 15 organ procurement organizations (OPO) that tested a newly-launched United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) Organ Tracking Service. Carolina Donor Service now uses the service, which utilizes GEGO global tracking devices that are attached to packaged organs to provide a live tracking map and real-time notifications as organs are delivered to transplant centers.

This new service offers OPOs and transplant hospital staff the ability to know when an organ is in transit, when an organ arrives at an airport, and when an organ has arrived at the correct destination. 

Inclement weather, flight delays, and baggage handling could delay the delivery of lifesaving organs. Notification of a delay will allow OPOs to quickly make alternate arrangements if needed to get the organ delivered in time.

“Though we have never had an organ that was unable to be transplanted due to a transportation issue, we are excited to use this new technology,” said Danielle Niedfeldt, President and CEO of Carolina Donor Services. “Safe delivery of organs to patients in need is a critical step in saving lives. And, being part of this essential project improves the donation and transplantation process and makes the delivery of organs more efficient.”

The UNOS Organ Tracking Service was developed, tested and improved over a course of several years. The technology incorporates feedback from users, helping to improve the organ transportation process. 

“We built this service around the needs of the organ procurement organizations who are responsible for transporting organs,” said UNOS Labs Program Manager Casey Humphries. “The fact that OPOs influenced the development of this service is what sets it apart. It continues to evolve around what works best for them.”

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About Carolina Donor Services

Carolina Donor Services is North Carolina’s largest federally designated, not-for-profit organ donation and tissue recovery organization serving 7.5 million people in 77 counties of North Carolina and Virginia. With offices in Durham, Greenville, and Winston-Salem, Carolina Donor Services maximizes the passing of the heroic gift of life from one human being to another through organ and tissue donation. In North Carolina, almost 3,000 people are currently waiting for organ transplants, and over 107,000 people are on the organ waiting list nationally. For more information, visit CarolinaDonorServices.org or call 1-800-200-2672.

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