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The majority of organ donor cases occur as a result of patients being declared brain dead.  

In certain cases, a patient’s heart will stop and this person may be a potential organ donor. This is known as Donation after Cardiac Death (DCD).

  • DCD allows for the recovery of kidneys, pancreas, livers, lungs, tissue and, in rare instances, hearts from patients who have suffered a devastating non-recoverable illness or injury and are ventilator dependent, but do not technically meet the criteria to be declared brain dead.
  • DCD is offered to families only after the decision has been made to remove the patient from the ventilator.
  • The recovery of organs for DCD takes place after the patient has been declared dead based on the clinical findings of irreversible cessation of circulation or blood flow.

The success of DCD is dependent on the collaborative effort and effective partnership among donor hospitals, transplant centers, and LiveOnNY.

End-of Life Donor Care for the DCD Donor: Best Practices to Ensure Success
  • Commitment of leadership to improve DCD within your institution
  • Clearly defined policies and procedures
  • Build a team of experts with clearly defined roles and responsibilities
  • Optimal communication within multidisciplinary team
  • Commitment to quality donor family care
   Transplant Management for DCD: Best Practices to Ensure Success
  • Standardization of recovery process to insure optimal outcomes
  • Use data to build evidence-based best practices
  • Optimizing donor selection criteria