What it is like to be an intern at TREC

Rachyl Pines Staff Updates

By Jessica Nunez, Intern Hello, my name is Jessica Nunez and I am from Santa Clarita, California. I am entering my fourth year at UCLA, majoring in Cognitive Science and Spanish, Community and Culture. I have been interning at Transplant Research and Education Center (TREC) since March 2019. As a freshman, I was overwhelmed with the school dynamic and completed multiple searches in efforts to find a job that encompassed my passions and brought a …

Surveying Spanish-Speaking Kidney Patients

Rachyl Pines Donation Stories, Transplant News

By Yaquelin Arevalo Iraheta, Junior Research Associate. Using an interpreter is worse than having both the patient and provider speak the same language because it loses the personal and intimate element between both parties. Breaking the language barrier that Spanish-speaking patients face when receiving healthcare can also help them overcome cultural barriers such as mistrust of their provider. One of the research projects going on at the Transplant Research and Education Center (TREC) involves surveying …

Intern, Sarah Brecher Shares About her Time as an Intern at TREC

Rachyl Pines Staff Updates

By, Sarah Brecher, Intern My name is Sarah Brecher and over the last two years, I have served as an intern at the Transplant Research and Education Center (TREC). I initially entered the lab as a sophomore interested in the basic principles of preventing disease and promoting health through public health research. Two years later as I enter my senior year at UCLA, the work at the lab has increased my commitment to public health …

New Innovations in Transplantation to Ensure that the Need for Kidneys is Met

Rachyl Pines New Research from TREC, Transplant News

By Rachyl Pines, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow Dr. Waterman and Dr. Pines are the research committee leads for the National Kidney Registry (NKR), a non-profit organization whose mission is to “save and improve the lives of people facing kidney failure by increasing the quality, speed and number of living donor transplants in the world as well as protecting all living kidney donors.” Learn more about this organization by clicking here. The NKR has been a leader …

Announcing the launch of the Listening & Resource Center (KTLRC) & bilingual educational guide

Rachyl Pines COVID-19, Transplant News

By Emily H. Wood, Research Associate The Transplant Research and Education Center (TREC), has launched the COVID-19 Kidney / Transplant Listening & Resource Center (KTLRC). The KTLRC is a toll-free call center that allows patients, their loved ones, and caregivers to connect with our experienced staff to share their questions, concerns, and receive answers, education, and referrals for additional resources. The KTLRC can be reached at: 1-800-830-0484 trec@mednet.ucla.edu We created the KTLRC in direct response …

Working Remotely During COVID-19: Our Top Tips for Success

Rachyl Pines COVID-19

By Ariana Murillo, Intern There are many ways to maintain a work-life balance while transitioning to working from home due to COVID-19. It can take some time for you (and your family!) to adjust to being at home for most of the day. It will take a lot of trial and error to develop a plan that works best for you. Even if previous days seemed overwhelming or chaotic, ultimately, transitioning to remote work can …

What it is like to join TREC as a researcher during COVID-19

Rachyl Pines COVID-19, New Research from TREC

By Dr. Rachyl Pines, Postdoctoral Research Fellow My name is Rachyl Pines, and I just finished my PhD in Communication from University of California, Santa Barbara in Communication. This picture is of me defending my dissertation to finish my PhD at home.   My research during my PhD focused on ways we can use communication between doctors and patients to improve patient care in a lot of ways. For example, how can healthcare professionals use …

Recommendations for making transplant education accessible for patients with CKD stages 3-5

Emily Wood New Publications, New Research from TREC, Transplant News

By Grace H. Kim, Research Associate The recent publication, “Recommendations for Systematizing Transplant Education Within a Care Delivery System for Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease Stages 3 to 5”1 by Waterman et al., discusses the findings from a telephone survey of 40 kidney patients, 13 support persons, and 10 providers who were asked about barriers to transplant education and their educational preferences. This review highlights the key barriers identified by chronic kidney disease (CKD) and …

Guiding more patients from the dialysis center to the transplant waitlist

Emily Wood New Publications, New Research from TREC, Transplant News

By Anne Osuji, Research Associate In “Education Strategies in Dialysis Centers Associated With Increased Transplant Wait-listing Rates,” Dr. Waterman and coauthors explore the many challenges associated with delivering transplant education in dialysis centers and recommend education strategies that are shown to be associated with increasing waitlisting rates. A Need for Effective Education for Dialysis Center Settings There are many barriers to kidney transplant, with challenges reaching and educating prospective recipients being among the most prominent. …

Challenges in Kidney Transplant During COVID-19: ASN updates and solutions

Emily Wood COVID-19, Transplant News

By Grace H. Kim, Research Associate The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) hosted a webinar on April 23rd to update the kidney community about the current status of transplant programs during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While many transplant programs have temporarily ceased surgeries, as of May 1, 2020, forty-nine kidney transplant programs in the United States remain active and are continuing with emergent transplant procedures and surgeries.1 A full listing of active centers can be …

Top 10 ways to reduce stress during COVID-19

Emily Wood COVID-19, Transplant News

By Grace Kim, Research Associate The recent COVID-19 outbreak has brought many small- and large-scale changes to daily life. Many of us are facing altered routines, increasing financial pressures, and social isolation,1 all of which have the potential to increase stress and anxiety.2 Most of us carry fears about getting COVID-19 and the uncertainty of how it could affect us and the people we love socially and economically. Although social distancing is one of the …

ET @Home improves decision-making for black & low-income patients

Emily Wood New Publications, New Research from TREC, Transplant News

By Anne Osuji, Research Associate & Jessica Nunez, Intern Access to Transplant Education is Unequal There are more than 700,000 Americans with kidneys that can no longer support the needs of the body to remove waste and excess fluid; they have End-Stage Kidney Disease (ESKD).1 Patients with ESKD must either receive frequent dialysis or receive a kidney transplant from a deceased or living donor in order to stay alive. Because waiting for a kidney from …

Resources to help you prepare for COVID-19

Emily Wood Transplant News

Updated 3.19.20 With the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) continuing to rise across the country and the globe, kidney patients, transplant recipients, and living donors may be wondering what steps they can take to be prepared and to try to stay well. We’ve put together a list of resources that you can consult to prepare and stay up to date on the COVID-19 situation. If you have questions, you should reach out to …

Paired exchange programs offer expanded donor protections to address critical disincentives to living donation

Emily Wood Transplant News

By Lizbeth Alvarez, Research Associate In the recent article,  looking at “Removing Disincentives to Kidney Donation: A Quantitative Analysis” 1 McCormick et al., highlight the widespread agreement among researchers, physicians, and policy makers that removing financial disincentives to living kidney donation would increase the number of donors and be a fairer process. The article identified seven disincentives that living donors face, including: Cost of travel and lodging at a transplant center Loss of income due …

Expanding Medicare coverage for immunosuppressive drugs will save lives and money

Emily Wood Transplant News

By TREC Staff The recently introduced Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act (H.R. 5534) seeks to expand current Medicare coverage for the immunosuppressive drugs that allow transplant recipients to live. These drugs are currently covered for just 36 months post-transplant, despite the lifelong drug regimen required by transplant patients to prevent organ rejection and death. The bill was introduced last year by Reps. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) and Michael Burgess (D-Texas), and has …

Explore Transplant year in review: best of 2019

Emily Wood Do Not Use

By Anne Osuji, Research Associate As we enter a new decade, let’s take a moment to reflect on our 2019 year in review. The TREC team had some incredible moments this year, and we are proud to have accomplished so much in 2019! Together with our partners, we launched several new studies, won new grants to further our work, published over a dozen journal articles and abstracts, presented at national conferences including the 2019 American …

Doing good together through the TED Fellows program

Emily Wood Transplant News

Dr. Amy Waterman had her first introduction to TED at TED2016: Dream in Vancouver, Canada. The experience was transformational for her and she decided to take her work in transplant to a large scale, educating as many patients and living donors as possible. Since then, she has gone on to serve as a mentor in the TED Fellows program, which provides individualized feedback, guidance, skills training, and support to Fellows by matching them with a …

Dr. Amy Waterman named the 2019 AST Clinician of Distinction

Amanda Lipsey Donation Stories

We are excited to announce that Dr. Amy Waterman has been named the recipient of the 2019 Clinician of Distinction Award by the American Society of Transplantation (AST)! Each year the award is presented to a non-physician clinician who is an expert in their field and who is making outstanding contributions to clinical transplant. This year Dr. Waterman was nominated by Dr. Matthew Cooper, a longtime friend and colleague, and a professor of surgery and …

QIP changes are coming in 2020—Is your dialysis center ready? The Kidney Transplant Toolkit can help

Amanda Lipsey New Publications, Transplant News

For Professionals in Nephrology, Dialysis, and Transplant: A discussion of CMS ESRD QIP changes that could impact your funding and the Toolkit that will help you be ready CMS requires dialysis centers to increase patients wait-listed for transplant Earlier this year, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that, as part of its ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP) starting January 1, 2020, dialysis facilities will be required to report their Percentage of Prevalent …

Real patient stories inspire and educate

Amanda Lipsey Donation Stories, From the Founder, Transplant News

Some of our earliest memories are of hearing stories read to us by our parents – fairy tales, fables, adventures, and epic journeys. Storytelling is an innate and universal part of the human experience. Stories help us make sense of our lives, mark important occasions, and share and connect with the people who matter to us. From founding myths like the tale of Romulus and Remus to true accounts of heroism, or even casual stories …