Projects per year
AIM: To describe the direct and indirect costs incurred by Australian living kidney donors.
METHODS: We studied 55 living kidney donors from 3 centres in Perth, Australia and 1 centre in Melbourne, Australia (2010-2014); 49 donors provided information on expenses incurred during the donor evaluation period and up to 3 months after donation. We used a micro-costing approach to measure and value the units of resources consumed. Expenses were grouped as direct costs (ground and air travel, accommodation, and prescription medications) and indirect costs (lost wages and lost productivity). We standardized costs to the year 2016 in Australian dollars.
RESULTS: The most common direct costs were for ground travel (100%), parking (76%), and post-donation pain medications or antibiotics (73%). The highest direct costs were for air travel (median $1,986 [3 donors]) and ground travel (median $459 [49 donors]). Donors also reported lost wages (median $9,891 [37 donors]). The inability to perform household activities or care for dependants were reported by 32 (65%) and 23 (47%) donors. Total direct costs averaged $1,682 per donor (median $806 among 49 donors). Total indirect costs averaged $7,249 per donor (median $7,273 among 49 donors). Total direct and indirect costs averaged $8,932 per donor (median $7,963 among 49 donors).
CONCLUSION: Many Australian living kidney donors incur substantial costs during the donation process. Our findings inform the continued development of policies and programs designed to minimize costs incurred by living kidney donors.