Orlando man waiting for kidney donation has hope with new legislation

With an overhaul on how organs are donated, a Central Florida kidney patient has new hope.

"I call it the worst time of my life because of the uncertainties and every kidney patient goes through it. You get weird thoughts am I going to live, is my wife going to be a widow." Kam Shenai has been on the waiting list for a new kidney since 2020. 

He even created an essay called 88 hours, representing the free time he had in a week, to help inspire others as they wait for an organ transplant. "What you do with 88 hours is important."

With lawmakers passing the U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network Act, he hopes he and other patients, will have a better chance of getting a new kidney. According to the National Kidney Foundation, the transplant system has remained unchanged for 40 years, until now. 

There are 800,000 people on dialysis. And out of those 100,000 are on the transplant list. Only 25,000 transplants are available every year."

While we are still waiting for more details to be released, the new legislation will set policies for how organs get distributed and how patients get prioritized. It will also modernize the organ match technology and improve accountability in the complex transplant system. "Until you get the transplant you have to have a positive attitude about it." 

Till then Kam plans to cherish his 88 hours with his family and inspires other patients to do the same."Don’t treat dialysis as a death sentence, treat it as a gift of life."  

The National Kidney Foundation says they look forward to the President signing this into law as soon as possible.