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January 26, 1994

Race and Allocation of Kidneys for Transplantation

Author Affiliations

Regional Organ Bank of Illinois Chicago

JAMA. 1994;271(4):270. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510280031018

To the Editor.  —In the Special Communication by Gaston et al,1 the authors misinterpret our previously reported results of an evaluation of a local variance of the UNOS point system on organ distribution2 as it pertains to waiting times. Gaston et al state, "While this algorithm enhances black patients' access to kidneys and preserves the efficiency of outstanding matches, its implicit race consciousness does not address the disparity in waiting times between blacks and whites," and, in fact, it "may exacerbate the problem...." On the contrary, our data showed that a significantly greater number of patients with waiting times of more than 2 years were among the highest ranked potential recipients when our local point system was used, thus benefiting patients with longer waiting times, such as blacks, and reducing the difference in waiting times between blacks and nonblacks.It is precisely for these reasons that the adoption

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