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Transplant Center Patient Support Services

Queen’s Transplant Center
Physicians Office Building 3 (POB 3), Suite 404

550 S. Beretania Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

Phone:
808-691-8897

Fax: 
808-691-8896

Clinic Hours: 
Monday – Friday, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm

» Locations » Hospitals & Locations » Queen's Medical Center » Services » Transplant Center » Transplant Center Patient Support Services

Patient Support Services

Queen’s Transplant Center offers support services to help you during your transplant waiting period and your transplant recovery period.

Counseling and support for organ transplant patients

Having an organ transplant is a significant change in your life, and can cause significant stress. The team at the Queen’s Transplant Center is committed to providing emotional support to our patients and their families.

If you are having a hard time adjusting to your illness and think you need help, please talk to someone: your dialysis social worker, your physician, or the transplant social worker are all great places to start. They can provide you with referrals to a mental health provider who specializes in transplant patients.

If you have had any of the following symptoms frequently in the last two weeks, please ask for help:

Support Groups

A support group can help you cope with physical, economic, psychological, and social challenges that are part of your illness both before and after your transplant surgery.

During a support group, you can talk to others familiar with your situation, learn about the process of transplant, and learn how to cope with your illness. Participants commit to confidentiality, so members can freely talk about their experiences in a safe environment.

  • Learn about transplant, health, medications, and taking care of your illness
  • Talk story with other people who are pre- or post-transplant
  • Learn how to cope with changes in your life
  • Make new friendships with people who can support you
  • Learn how to navigate the process of transplant
  • People who are on the transplant waitlist at The Queen’s Medical Center
  • People who have received a transplant
  • Family members, friends and caregivers
  • Queen’s Transplant Center Conference Room in Physicians Office Building 3  (POB 3) on the 4th floor
  • Third Thursdays and third Fridays of the month from 10:00 – 11:00 am

Please contact a transplant social worker if you are interested in attending one of our support groups.

Finding a Caregiver for Transplant Patients

Because of the intense recovery period after a transplant surgery, the Queen’s Transplant Center requires that each patient have a caregiver for post-transplant care.

That means someone, usually a family member or friend, will be available to the patient 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for a period of one (1) month after transplant in order to provide care, support and transportation to and from appointments. This person will need to learn about taking care of the patient’s new organ, what foods are allowed and which are not, what medications to take and when to call for help.

Patients who do not have a family member or friend able to be a caregiver will have to hire help. 

Generally, insurance does not cover caregivers. However, the team at Queen’s Transplant Center is able to find resources for patients in need. Please contact a transplant social worker if you are unable to find someone to help and need to hire someone.

Substance Cessation

Substance Cessation for Transplant Patients (Alcohol, Drugs, or Tobacco)

Queen’s Transplant Center does not support the use of tobacco/nicotine, illegal drugs, or narcotics not prescribed by a physician in transplant candidates. In addition to compromising your health and graft function, indulging in these substances may lead to complications. Tobacco/nicotine use includes cigarettes, cigars, pipes, kreteks, electronic cigarettes, vape, nicotine patches, and any other smokeless tobacco (chew, dip, snuff, nicotine gum, betel nut).

If you are being evaluated for Liver Transplant, you must also abstain from alcohol now and after transplant, as this can severely damage your organ and your health.

Illegal drugs include any and all forms of the following substances: marijuana, synthetic marijuana, cocaine, heroin and opiates, “ice” or crystal meth, or any other substances not prescribed by your physician. Candidates who are authorized to engage in medical use marijuana in Hawaii must be able to show a valid current certification from their certifying Physician/APRN. Note that even if you have a medical marijuana certificate, your insurance company may not cover you for transplant.

If you are using any substances, you may be declined for transplant or referred for substance abuse counseling and/or a formal rehabilitation program. Queen’s Transplant Center is committed to providing resources to potential patients needing help in quitting substances. Those patients may contact the following resources or a transplant social worker for more information at 808-691-8897.

808-691-4705
Call the Queen’s SIGH Program for tobacco cessation to talk to a Quit Coach.

1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669)
Talk to a Quit Coach to create a plan that will work for you.

808-734-4357
www.na-hawaii.org
Find a safe, confidential meeting to share with and learn from others.

808-946-1438
www.oahucentraloffice.com
Find a safe, confidential meeting to share with and learn from others.

Resources & Links

In Case of a Natural Disaster

The national Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN), administered by United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), is dedicated to providing assistance to transplant candidates and potential living donors in the event of a natural disaster affecting long-term services of transplant centers. Every transplant center is a member of the OPTN/UNOS which has a well-established communication system. This includes 24-hour telephone access and a web site.

In the event of a natural or man-made disaster that disrupts the Queen’s Transplant Center’s ability to function, call and check the following for updates on our status and for other information you may need:

Such circumstances may include, but are not limited to:

  • Loss of Medicare certification
  • Notification by UNOS of an adverse action imposed upon the center
  • Unavailability of transplant surgeon(s)
  • Natural disaster requiring transfer of patients that result in the Center’s potential long-term disruption of service.

As soon as possible, we will attempt to contact transplant candidates and potential living donors. We will provide assistance to waiting list patients who choose to transfer to the waiting list of another Medicare-approved transplant center without loss of time accrued on the waiting list.

Remember, the single largest determinant in how well you will recover after a disaster is how well you’ve prepared before a disaster strikes. We strongly encourage you to prepare an emergency supply kit. Below is a list of resources and information that you may find helpful. We encourage you to keep this information with your emergency kit so it is accessible at all times.

Additional disaster preparedness resources:

If you go to a shelter, bring:

  • Your entire supply of medications and medication list with you. This is important because it may be days or weeks before you are able to return to your home.
  • Medical supplies and equipment, e.g., peritoneal dialysis equipment (gloves, mask, caps), oxygen, nebulizer, CPAP, feeding tubes, etc.
  • Cooler to store medications or other supplies that need to be cold.
  • Insurance cards and identification card.
  • Other items in your emergency supply kit.

Upon arrival to the shelter, inform the staff of the following:

  • Any special medical needs you may have, e.g., require assistance with ambulation, position change, and transfer.
  • Medication that needs refrigeration, e.g., insulin.