The CDTRP would like to congratulate Dr. Shaifali Sandal (Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University) on her recent success in the American Society of Transplantation Research Network Career Development Grants: 2020 grant competition. Dr. Sandal was awarded funds to support her project listed below:

Identifying system-level barriers to living donor kidney transplantation: a comparative case analysis

Patients who have end-stage renal disease need dialysis or a kidney transplant to survive. Kidney transplantation from a living donor is considered to be the best treatment option as it is associated with better longevity for the patient and lower costs to the health care system. Yet, the rates of living donation at several centers in Canada are low and are decreasing despite new initiatives. In addition, there are significant inter-provincial variations. In the provinces of Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia, <15%, 30-40% and 50-60% of the kidney transplants done annually are from living donors, respectively.

Currently, efforts to increase living donation tend to focus on the patient, on teaching and training them how to seek donors. This is not effective for all patients and is thought to have created an unfair system favouring those with the means to find living donors. However, health professional and health-system barriers to living donation have not been well studied. Thus, our objective now is to better understand these barriers so as to inform key priority and research areas by province. In particular, we want to study the unique attributes of a health system with high performance in living donation that can be applied to other health systems with variable rates. Our fundamental goal is to help improve the delivery of health services to those who have end-stage renal disease as per the One-Transplant-For-Life vision of the CDTRP.

How the CDTRP has helped with our research program or supported our applications/progress/ work?

“This is an ambitious project and requires co-operation from across transplant centers in the country. The CDTRP allowed us a platform to obtain preliminary results to help with the grant application. In addition, their letter of support helped the grant review process. One reviewer wrote, “Project is feasible. Already has buy-in from all transplant centers in Canada.” Once we are able to return to our regular state of research activity, we are hoping to use several CDTRP platforms to assist with data collection, survey administration and knowledge dissemination. My research assistants are also interested in a long-term career in transplantation. They look forward to presenting findings at upcoming national and international meetings and conferences and networking with key leadership so as to further their interests and career aspirations.”- Dr. Sandal