Does Racial Disparity in Kidney Transplant Waitlisting Persist After Accounting for Social Determinants of Health? Academic Article uri icon


  • African Americans (AA) have lower rates of kidney transplantation (KT) compared with Whites (WH), even after adjusting for demographic and medical factors. In this study, we examined whether the racial disparity in KT waitlisting persists after adjusting for social determinants of health (eg, cultural, psychosocial, and knowledge).We prospectively followed a cohort of 1055 patients who were evaluated for KT between 3 of 10 to 10 of 12 and followed through 8 of 18. Participants completed a semistructured telephone interview shortly after their first KT evaluation appointment. We used the Wilcoxon rank-sum and Pearson chi-square tests to examine race differences in the baseline characteristics. We then assessed racial differences in the probability of waitlisting while accounting for all predictors using cumulative incidence curves and Fine and Gray proportional subdistribution hazards models.There were significant differences in the baseline characteristics between non-Hispanic AA and non-Hispanic WH. AA were 25% less likely (95% confidence interval, 0.60-0.96) to be waitlisted than WH even after adjusting for medical factors and social determinants of health. In addition, being older, having lower income, public insurance, more comorbidities, and being on dialysis decreased the probability of waitlisting while having more social support and transplant knowledge increased the probability of waitlisting.Racial disparity in kidney transplant waitlisting persisted even after adjusting for medical factors and social determinants of health, suggesting the need to identify novel factors that impact racial disparity in transplant waitlisting. Developing interventions targeting cultural and psychosocial factors may enhance equity in access to transplantation.

publication date

  • December 2020