- Almost 120,000 people were waiting for an organ transplant in September 2021 in the U.S.
- The below infographic explores which types of organs are needed.
- Potential solutions are on the horizon, but these will require large amounts of time and research before they can be widely used.
A genetically modified pig's heart has been successfully transplanted into a human for the first time. The operation, performed in Baltimore in the United States on Friday, offers a potential future solution to long transplant waiting lists. Dr. Bartley Griffith, who performed the operation, described the situation on Monday: “It creates the pulse, it creates the pressure, it is his heart,” adding: “It’s working and it looks normal. We are thrilled, but we don’t know what tomorrow will bring us. This has never been done before.”
This infographic takes a look at the size of the transplant waiting list problem in the U.S. According to the Health Resources & Services Administration, almost 120 thousand people were waiting for an organ in September 2021, with a kidney being the most needed (over 97 thousand) by far. A heart transplant was needed by around 3,500 people.
What is the World Economic Forum doing to accelerate value-based health care?
Value-based healthcare is about focusing on delivering health outcomes that truly matter to the individual and the society at large in cost-effective ways. The focus is on putting the individual at the centre of health and care.
There is growing concern over the sustainability and cost of healthcare – rising globally at an unprecedented rate. By eliminating inefficiencies in healthcare delivery, about one-fifth of health spending in the OECD and some $1 trillion in the United States alone can be saved every year.
The World Economic Forum’s Global Coalition for Value in Healthcare has welcomed its first cohort of four value-based healthcare innovation hubs in the Netherlands, Portugal, Wales and Denmark.
These hubs form a community of practice, whose learnings, methodologies and tools will help multiple organizations scale up their health system transformation and accelerate the pace of value-based healthcare.
Read more, and find out how to join the community of hubs.
While the operation is being described as a watershed moment, Dr. David Klassen, the chief medical officer of the United Network for Organ Sharing, warns that there is still a long way to go before this is a valid option for a large number of patients: “Doors are starting to open that will lead, I believe, to major changes in how we treat organ failure" but “Events like these can be dramatized in the press, and it’s important to maintain perspective. It takes a long time to mature a therapy like this.”