Transplant Support Team and Pharmacy

Transplant Coordinator

The evaluation team assists patients through the process from referral to transplantation. They manage each patient case to ensure each detail required for clearance to transplant has been reviewed and approved. This group is the primary communication link between the faculty and the patients through the process prior to transplantation. The Transplant Coordinators receive and manage organ offers 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They are the individuals that place the calls to the patients advising them that an organ is available and facilitates organ recovery team deployment. While being a Transplant Coordinator requires commitment, dedication, and a flexible schedule, it is also very rewarding. We also have support staff to schedule appointments, schedule operating room time, mail information and field inquiry calls. To contact the transplant evaluation team, please call 734-936-7491 or 1-800-333-9013.

Nursing Team

Nurses are invaluable in developing relationships with transplant patients and providing very specialized care. Nurses provide education on disease and transplantation. Nurses assist the faculty in monitoring test results, communicating with patients regarding medical conditions, explaining preparations for testing, and monitoring medication levels. Nursing is involved in patient evaluation, medical management, pre-operative education, and follow up care. They provide care via the telephone contacts, clinic visits, and group education forums. The nursing team works closely with medical assistants and office assistants to triage telephone calls, retrieve messages for refills, schedule appointments, and meet patient requests. To contact the nursing team, please call 734-936-7491 or 1-800-333-9013.

Physician Assistant and Nurse Practitioner Teams

Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners are highly trained and skilled individuals who assist in the medical management of transplant patients. Prior to transplantation, this team may assist in the evaluation process, by reviewing test results and documentation prior to scheduling surgery, and/or may perform the history and physical prior to surgery. During the inpatient admission, this team would monitor the patients during their inpatient stay, would provide continuity on the patient's case between medical specialty groups, and would work to ensure necessary medications would be available to the patient following discharge. During an outpatient visit in the clinic or in the Transplant Ambulatory Care Unit (TACU) patients may receive care, an infusion, biopsy or other outpatient procedure through the services of a Nurse Practitioner or a Physician Assistant. Contact can be made with Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners through the nursing or evaluation teams.

Social Work Team

Transplant social workers help patients and caregivers through all phases of transplant and are an integral part of the transplantation team. Prior to transplant, social workers assist patients and families in understanding and coping with the emotional, psychological and social issues related to transplant. They provide counseling and emotional support to patients and families as they proceed through the transplantation process. Social workers work closely with the financial counselors to direct patients and families to information and resources that may be helpful related to financial and insurance issues. Social workers lead educational and support groups, and refer patients and families to community agencies and resources, while guiding patients and families throughout the entire transplant process. To contact the social work team, please call 734-764-6893.

Nutrition Team

The nutrition team works with the patient to address the changes in their nutritional needs as they progress through transplantation. Prior to transplantation, the Nutrition Team may coordinate the patient's nutritional needs with their primary care provider or their dialysis center. Following transplant, the Nutrition Team will teach the patient how to transition to a normal healthy diet. For instance, a healthy diet for a dialysis patient is different than a healthy diet for a normal or post transplant patient. The Nutrition Team works with the post transplant patient to help them understand and prevent the complications and/or side effects of immunosuppressive medications, such as weight gain, muscle loss, high cholesterol levels, and the loss of excess vitamins. Patients can address their nutritional concerns by contacting the Nursing Team, who will evaluate the concerns and make a referral to the Nutrition Team.

Financial Counseling Team

The financial aspects of transplantation are complex. Financial Counselors work with patients and their families to help them understand the various financial aspects of transplantation. They work with the patient's insurance carriers to verify coverage and obtain necessary prior authorizations for transplant services. Patients need to maintain regular contact with Financial Counselors while they are waiting for a transplant to ensure any coverage changes have been reviewed and the transplant admission will be covered. In the event a patient has limited insurance coverage or financial resources, the Financial Counselor will work with the patient and the social worker to explore alternative funding opportunities. Watch our video for an overview of the financial aspects of organ transplant.  To contact a Financial Counselor, please call 1-800-333-9013.

Clinical Research Team

Research is an important component of the Transplant program. The Clinical Research Team, at the forefront of transplantation research, are currently studying the diseases that are treated by transplantation, developing alternative options and surgical procedures and examining therapies to prevent rejection, post-transplant infection and other post-transplant complications. Research staff responsibilities include identifying eligible patients, informing patients about research options, enrolling patients in research studies, collecting research data and coordinating research care. The Clinical Research Team has conducted studies with all of the currently used anti-rejection medications and research team members work closely with the rest of the clinical team to provide patients access to cutting edge therapies before they are available everywhere. The Transplant Center is currently conducting more than 30 clinical research studies designed to improve the understanding of transplantation and enhance the outcomes for all patients.

Transplant Pharmacist Team

Transplant Pharmacists are highly trained individuals who have knowledge and experience in managing transplant medications. Prior to transplant, the Transplant Pharmacist team assists in the evaluation process, by reviewing allergy and medications and addressing medication-related questions from the transplant evaluation team. During the inpatient admission, the Transplant Pharmacist team provides medication education to patients and family/caregivers, and assists the rest of the transplant team with regard to monitoring and managing transplant medications. Patients can also address their medication-related concerns with a Transplant Pharmacist during outpatient clinic visits after discharge.

The University of Michigan Specialty Pharmacy is committed to providing transplant patients with exceptional customer service. Our experienced pharmacists are here to support you throughout the entire treatment process. In addition, the specialty pharmacy offers financial counseling and support services to assist patients in navigating through the complexities of insurance coverage and allows patients to get answers to questions regarding their medication regimen and medication side effects. University of Michigan Specialty Pharmacy coordinates the efforts of professionals from across the medical center, including the University of Michigan Transplant Center and the Department of Pharmacy, to provide these services.

Transplant patients, please call 1-866-946-7695 for more information or to enroll with the UMHS Specialty Pharmacy.

Fax number: 734-232-3408