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Keywords:

  • disability;
  • employment;
  • end stage renal disease;
  • Medicare;
  • renal transplant

Eng M, Zhang J, Cambon A, Marvin MR, Gleason J. Employment outcomes following successful renal transplantation. Clin Transplant 2011 DOI: 10.1111/j.1399-0012.2011.01441.x. © 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

Abstract:  Background:  Data on employment outcomes after successful renal transplantation are few. We conducted this study to identify favorable factors for employment after transplantation.

Methods:  Adult patients <65 yr of age who underwent renal transplantation between January 1, 2002 and December 31, 2007 were surveyed. Patients with graft survival <1 yr were excluded. We also tested their knowledge of Medicare coverage after transplantation. Data were analyzed using chi-squared and Fisher’s exact tests. p-Value <0.05 was considered statistically significant.

Results:  A 55% response rate was obtained where 56% of respondents were employed after transplantation. Race, marital status, previous transplant, and complicated post-operative course did not influence employment. Favorable factors include male gender (p = 0.04), younger age (<40 [p = 0.0003] or <50 yr [p < 0.0001]), having ≥1 dependent (p = 0.04), higher education (minimum high school degree [p = 0.003] or some college [p = 0.002]), live donor recipient (p = 0.004), wait time <2 yr (p = 0.03), dialysis <2 yr (p < 0.0001) or pre-dialysis (p = 0.04), and pre-transplantation employment (p < 0.0001). Mean time for employment was 4.9 ± 6.3 months (median three months). Common reasons for unemployment were disability (59%) and retirement (27%). Finally, 7% correctly responded that Medicare benefits end 36 months following transplantation.

Conclusions:  Potentially modifiable factors to improve employment are earlier referral and better education regarding Medicare eligibility.