Publication Spotlight: Dr. Accetta-Rojas

Acetta Rojas

Interview with Gabriela Accetta-Rojas, MD, MAS Candidate 2024, University of California San Francisco, author of Rurality of patient residence and access to transplantation among children with kidney failure in the United States.

What question did your study aim to answer?

We aimed to examine whether children with kidney failure living in rural and micropolitan areas of the US have differential access to deceased and living donor transplantation compared to children living in metropolitan areas.

What inspired you to conduct this study?

Rural and micropolitan areas correspond to areas of shortage of healthcare professionals, including pediatric nephrologists, and are also located farther from dialysis units and transplant centers. We intended to investigate if the rurality of residence would represent a barrier to pediatric kidney transplant access in the US.

Which USRDS datasets did you use to conduct your study?

We used the core datasets, which include Patients file and MEDVID file.

Using plain language, please summarize your study conclusions in two or three points.

  • Differently from what we expected, children living in rural and micropolitan areas had a higher chance of receiving a living donor transplant than those living in metropolitan areas.
  • There were no differences between children living in rural, micropolitan, and metropolitan areas regarding the chance of being registered on the waitlist and the chance of receiving a deceased donor kidney transplant, which is reassuring.

Please share a specific insight about working with USRDS data that you learned during the completion of this study.

USRDS is a fantastic resource for epidemiological studies involving patients with kidney failure. I was surprised by the completeness of the pediatric database.

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