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INTRODUCTION: Despite the availability of guidelines for the evaluation of candidates for renal transplantation, variation in access to transplantation exists. This national survey investigates whether centre variation exists in the assessment of patients for renal transplantation in the UK. METHODS: An online survey, informed by qualitative interviews, was distributed to all UK renal centres. This survey examined centre approaches to chronic kidney disease service provision, transplant recipient assessment, education provision and wait-listing decision making processes. Centre re-evaluation policies for patients already listed and priorities for future development were also examined. RESULTS: All 71 renal centres responded. Of these, 83% reviewed predialysis patients in a low clearance clinic. In 26% of centres transplantation was not discussed as a treatment option with all patients. Fourteen centres reported having a dedicated transplant assessment clinic whilst 28% did not have a formal assessment protocol. Age was an exclusion criterion for listing in 3 centers, all of which had a cut off at 75 years. 83% of centres excluded patients with a high BMI. Cardiac investigations were risk-stratified in 90% of centres. Surgical involvement varied with 11% of centres listing patients without formal surgical review. There was no formal protocol in place to re-evaluate listed patients in 62% of centres. CONCLUSIONS: There is wide variation in UK practice patterns for listing patients for renal transplantation, though its impact on access to transplantation is unclear. The extent to which centre-specific and patient-specific factors affect access to transplantation requires further analysis in a prospective cohort of patients.

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