Every year, more than 100,000 solid organs are transplanted in the world. Nearly 70,000 of them are kidneys. However, the waiting list continues to grow rapidly. Every 10 minutes a new person is added to the list. Most people who are looking for the renal transplant are on dialysis and transplantation is hardly the only way to improve their quality of life and return to everyday activity.
This guide has been written for people who have identified a kidney transplant as their goal and are looking for ways to achieve it.
- Kidney transplant cost worldwide in comparison
- Kidney transplant surgery cost in India
- Price of the renal replacement in Turkey
Bookimed is not engaged in buying and selling of the organs and does not respond to requests on organ donation!
If you need to undergo the kidney transplant, you must have a donor.
This material has information purposes only and aims to tell about the most cost-effective skilled inpatient care. It isn't a call to action. The choice is yours.
All prices, saving rates, and other cost information given below have 3 independent sources:
- hospital representatives, who are responsible for price relevance and other info on the clinic
- the Bookimed medical team, which calculates saving rates according to data submitted by the rated medical facilities to make comparison and decision more comfortable
- official websites of authoritative organizations that provide cost peculiarities, facts, and figures.
Prices are approximate and may change according to the clinic's internal price policy and exchange rates. Note that the final cost is estimated by treating physician.
Does a kidney transplant worth you?
Before saying yes to the renal transplant, you should take into account some things:
- the pros and cons of a transplant
- financial coverage of the surgery and medications you have to take for the rest of your life
- your ability to continue follow-up care and follow doctors' recommendations.
The final decision about kidney transplantation is yours. You will need to ask questions at your evaluation to be sure about your final choice. Learn as much as you can about all options of kidney replacement therapy or ask any questions to our medical coordinator.
Reasonable kidney transplant cost over the world — comparative characteristics
Despite the high demand for an organ transplant, this procedure is not available everywhere because of exorbitant prices. The United States is in the world's top in the number of renal replacements — 17,107 surgeries annually. However, the cost of a kidney transplant in the US is quite high and reaches $400,000. A lot of Americans have insurance that covers transplantation and medication. But what should people without insurance do?
In recent years, Asian countries have been gaining global leadership in organ transplantation. India and Turkey are the leading states for the kidney transplant not only in Asia but in the world as well. Patients from the USA and UK are engaged with cut-price and excellent quality services.
According to WHO, 91 countries worldwide carry out organ transplants. However, renal replacement is hard for foreign patients to get in most of the states. In Asian nations like India or Turkey, the kidney transplant is available and legal for everyone, including the inbound patients.
Cut-priced kidney transplant in India
About 500,000 international patients choose India for medical care annually. Most of them are from Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Maldives, Kuwait, Iraq, the United Kingdom, the USA, Germany, and France. The country is among Top 10 medical tourism destinations in the world.
India is the second country globally due to the number of transplantations after the USA. Over 6,000 kidney replacements are performed in the country every year. 90% of them are carried out from a living donor.
Economical services are the primary reason why people travel to India for treatments. The country is the first one worldwide because of the lowest expenses for organ replacements.
The economic benefit can reach up to 95% without insurance. For example,
- the kidney transplant cost in India is about 95% lower than in the United States ($13,000 in India and app. $400,000 in the USA)
- the surgery is 75% cheaper than in the United Kingdom ($13,000 in India and $55,000 or £42,000)
- people's expenses for kidney transplantation in India are approximately 85% lower than in Germany and Israel (famous countries for medical care around the world). $13,000 versus $80,000 and $100,000 per transplant correspondingly.
When people decide on the renal transplant, they should be ready to take drugs after the operation their whole life. The medication cost varies in different countries according to the price policy of each particular state. However, India provides generics, 100% low-priced analogs of expensive brand-name drugs. These branded drug replications help cut down expenses for the treatment by at least 70%.
India is also popular with medical tourists because of doctors' vast experience and almost zero waiting lists. Indian transplant surgeons 20,000 organ replacements. 90-95% of them are successful.
Top 3 kidney transplant hospitals in India
* Prices may vary depending on the medical case and doctors' recommendations.
Cost-effective kidney transplant surgery in Turkey
1.1 mln health tourists visit Turkey each year. Citizens of the Middle Eastern countries, the UK, Germany, Ukraine, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Libya, prefer to get treatments in Turkey. The organ transplantation is one of the dominant specialties in the country due to the high-quality services, doctors' excellent qualification, reasonable prices, and short waiting lists.
Over 3,000 kidney transplants are performed in Turkey annually, according to the Turkey Transplant Foundation's report. 75% of the surgeries are conducted from a living donor. In 80% of cases, the human body accepts the implanted kidney.
Turkey is the best destination for kidney transplantation regarding the quality-to-price ratio. It is the second most popular country with international patients due to renal budget replacements.
- the kidney transplant in Turkey is up to 95% cheaper than in the United States ($15,000 in Turkey vs. $400,000 in the US)
- 70% more competitive than in the United Kingdom ($15,000 in Turkey and about $55,000 in the UK)
- the cost of the renal transplant in Turkey is 80% lower than in Germany ($15,000 vs $80,000) and 85% lower than in Israel ($15,000 compared to $100,000). At the same time, the treatment quality in these countries is on the same level.
Turkish doctors undergo training in the best universities of Europe and the USA and apply the latest technology to achieve high results. They cooperate with their international colleagues to interchange their experience and make the surgery more effective.
Turkey is among 10 best countries for medical tourism in the world due to the excellent services provided by the local medical facilities. 50 Turkish hospitals have JCI (Joint Commission International) accreditation — the highest index among other health tourism states (in comparison, Israel has only 20 JCI-accredited centers and Germany — only 10).
3 best Turkish centers for kidney transplantation
* Prices may vary depending on the medical case and doctors' recommendations.
Next step after you've decided you need the kidney transplant
Looking for the kidney transplant, international patients mostly are interested in 3 questions:
- how to avoid long waiting lists?
- where are the best and affordable places for the surgery?
- how much is a kidney transplant?
We're answering these questions slightly below.
What do people pay for? Pros and cons
Most people with kidney failure are on dialysis. However, dialysis can only do part of a job our healthy kidneys do healthy kidneys do for your body, so people choose the renal transplant as the best option for their life quality improvement. Thus, your kidneys will never work as the kidneys of the healthy person even after the transplant, the procedure has its advantages over dialysis:
- people after the kidney transplant live longer than people on dialysis
- the replacement helps to avoid complications as bone and heart diseases
- the renal transplant makes patients more energetic and gives less food limits
- your health can be almost as good as in people with the healthy kidneys if you follow doctor's recommendations
- new kidneys give you an opportunity to travel, work and take greater pleasure in life.
Despite all the advantages of the kidney replacement, it is still a surgery. Complications after the renal transplantation can be the same as after any other serious intervention — infection, bleeding, other organs damage.
Also, the three connections between your new kidney and body – the artery, vein, and ureter (a tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder), might leak or become blocked. The risk of complications does not mean that they will happen with you, it means they only can.
How do transplantologists perform the surgery step-by-step?
Kidney transplant is a surgery of placing a healthy kidney instead of that one no longer functions properly.
Kidney transplant surgery prolongs patient’s life and improves its quality.
- In European and Israeli hospitals the kidney transplant is possible to conduct only from a close relative (i.e. a parent, child, sibling, etc.). The kidney transplant surgery cost is up to 50% higher than in Asian medical facilities.
- Indian and Turkish clinics perform transplant from patient's relative donor or his/her spouse. However, a spouse can be a donor only if such a procedure is not forbidden by the law of their native country. The success rate of the surgeries is on the same level in both countries.
- In Turkey the kidney transplant cost is 3-4 times lower than in Israeli or German clinics. In India the price for the procedure is 5-6 times lower than in Europe and 2 times cheaper then in Turkey. German and Israeli hospitals offer approximately the same kidney transplant price.
The kidney transplant surgery takes 3 hours. In some cases — up to 5 hours. It is the only option for people with kidney failure to live healthier life without dialysis.
You’ll have to take medications for a whole life after the kidney transplant to avoid rejection. Living-donor kidney transplant is the only available type for international patients.
Important to know!
- A patient should be admitted to the hospital 7 days before the procedure to undergo a preoperative preparation.
- A patient is allowed flying in 50 days after the discharge in case there are no complications.
- A donor may flight in 7 days after the procedure.
- The blood of a recipient should to be the same type with a donor.
How to get around the long waiting lists?
A kidney transplant procedure requires a suitable donor to successful organ acceptance. In almost all countries, only a close relative can become a compatible donor (family members — parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, spouse).
Unfortunately, relatives can be the donors not in all cases. It happens that close relatives do not match for the kidney transplant. What to do? — Paired-organ donation.
Anna and Helen are sisters. Anna has serious kidney matters, she needs an organ transplantation and Helen agrees to become a donor. During the tests, doctors turned out that kidney replacement in this case is impossible — sisters are incompatible.
Brothers John and Jack have the same issue. The results of the analysis showed that these families can exchange donors — Jack can be a donor for Anna, and Helen for John — an equal deal. Thus, a kidney transplant was performed for both and patients did not have to wait in a long queue.
However, there are situations when two pairs are not enough for exchange. In some cases, more than two pairs are connected by the indirect donor and form a donation chain with several recipients benefitting from the non-directed donor kidney. This method helps to avoid long waiting lists and get a kidney transplant, but is not available in all countries. Turkey provides this method very often.
How much is a kidney transplant over the world?
|from $13,000||from $15,000||from $80,000||from $100,000|
*All the kidney transplant prices given in the table above are approximate. The costs mainly depend on the currencies of the countries and may change.
If you want to undergo the procedure in Germany, be ready to pay for it in Euro. In this case, the kidney transplant price in Germany is €75,000-90,000.
What does kidney transplant cost depend on?
- Survival rates after the procedure and transplants results
Hospitals with a great experience of performing successful kidney transplants usually boost the prices for their services. Vast experience of doctors gives a possibility to achieve successful results and reduce the risk of complications after the surgery. Because of this reason the kidney transplant cost in such facilities will be higher.
- Urgency of the kidney transplant procedure
The organ is very hard to get. People have to wait for the kidney during the few years. The number of patients increases and forms long waiting lists. So, if a person needs the kidney transplant as soon as possible, s/he has to pay for the emergency.
But if you already have a donor, you may schedule the date of the procedure and undergo it immediately.
- General condition of patient’s health
Some patients with acute renal failure have to stay in the intensive care unit (ICU). It is a special department in a hospital that provides the critical care and life support for patients in the poor health condition.
According to the health condition, a patient stays in the intensive care unit during the different number of days. Stay in the ICU mostly affects the kidney transplant cost.
- Medical facility’s location
The kidney transplant cost varies in different countries. The price for the procedure is higher in European and the Middle East countries in comparison with Asian ones. For example, in India the kidney transplant price is 5-6 times lower than in Germany or Israel, but only 2-3 times cheaper than in Turkey.
The kidney replacement cost may also vary from city to city. This trend is common for India. The cities in the country are at the different levels of development, because of their size, location (near or far the ocean), and their attendance (price policy in the seaside town higher due to great number of tourists)
- Duration of your stay in the country
After the kidney transplant, you have to stay in the country for postoperative follow-ups. This period is very important for each patient.
During the postoperative exams, doctors supervise the health condition of a patient and make all possible to avoid the kidney rejection.
According to the health condition, each patient stays in the country for different number of days. During this period, a patient lives in a hotel or rental apartments and pay for accommodation out of their pocket. It may significantly increase the general kidney transplant cost.
What criteria has Bookimed team chosen when looking for the most affordable kidney transplant cost worldwide?
International patients mostly are interested in 2 questions: how much is a kidney transplant and where is the best place for value of their money without quality loss?
Bookimed medical coordinators have chosen world’s top countries with the best quality and price of kidney transplant taking into account:
- success rates of the surgery
- affordable pricing without quality loss
- surgeons’ experience
- patients’ reviews.
What does the kidney transplant cost include?
|Basic kidney transplant price includes:||Additional kidney transplant expenses are:*|
* The total bill for the procedure does not include anti-rejection or other drugs, the hospitalization in case of complications. You should pay for these services additionally.
After the kidney transplant, a patient should stay in the country to undergo postoperative follow ups. Bookimed Care Department can help you to find the most cost-effective hotel stay near the hospital.
Does the price of renal replacement contain any extra services?
Yes, some hospitals (especially, Turkish and Indian) offer kidney transplant packages that usually includes also:
- transfer from/to an airport
- in-hospital stay (usually for a patient and 1 accompanying person)
Some hospitals offer pre-operative tests and follow-ups contained into the kidney transplant price.
What is the cost of kidney transplant with insurance?
Health insurances cover the part or complete kidney transplant cost. Out-of-pocket prices may include preliminary testing, surgery, post-operative exams.
Depending on the country, the insurance covers 10-50% of the total bill or the private kidney transplant cost completely. Usually, the insurance does not cover medications.
Check this and other additional information with your insurance agent to make clear things you have to expect.
What does the kidney transplant cost not cover?
The diagnostic tests before the procedure are necessary to undergo for a recipient. However, the kidney transplant price does not include expenses for examinations and you pay for it additionally.
The charge for diagnosis before the kidney transplant varies in different medical facilities. You can have diagnostics in your hometown and come across with the test results in the chosen hospital.
Doctors give permission for the kidney transplant only after a complete examination of your donor. It takes 2-3 weeks. The first two weeks a donor undergoes the examination, and during the third week specialists prepare the results of laboratory studies. The diagnostic tests of your donor are not included into the general kidney transplant cost and are paid separately as well.
What else should you take into account?
Official documents which indicate the relationship degree between a patient and donor have to be represented before the kidney transplant procedure. Bookimed medical coordinator will provide you with additional information on the documents (if needed). It does not affect the kidney transplant cost. Bookimed services are free for patients.
Bookimed is not engaged in buying and selling of the organs and does not respond to requests on organ donation!
Which countries besides India and Turkey accepts international patients for renal transplantation?
The kidney is No.1 organ for transplantation in Germany — 25% of all transplant surgeries are the renal replacements according to statista.com, the leading portal giving access to healthcare statistics worldwide.
According to the German Organ Transplantation Foundation (Deutsche Stiftung Organtransplantation — DSO), surgeons perform over 2,000 kidney transplants annually. Most patients, undergoing the procedure in Germany, are from other countries.
International patients choose Germany due to high-quality and safety of medical services. German medical centers have the best statistics in the world according to the British Medical Journal version: 98% of kidney transplants in Germany are successful (only 2% have post-operative complications).
Over 280 living-donor kidney transplants and more than 200 cadaver-donor kidney transplants are performed in Israeli hospitals every year according to the National Organ Transplant Center.
The survival rate after the kidney transplantation in Israel is 84-91%. The main factor determining such positive statistics is a competent examination of a future recipient’s body functions.
Healthcare system in Israel is developing very quickly. Israeli doctors invent and apply cutting-edge instruments and equipment to reach better results. Surgeons here follow the strict international protocols, so quality of services and patients’ safety are on the highest level.
What can Bookimed help you with?
Share with us your needs on the kidney transplant and Bookimed medical coordinators will satisfy them and help you with:
- choosing a hospital and doctor. Bookimed coordinator will inform you on equipment and services in the hospital, patients’ experience and results, doctors’ qualification, the kidney transplant cost and help to select the best one.
- trip arrangement. Bookimed care team will schedule the exact date of your arrival at the hospital, help you with tickets, hotel stay, transfer, and other issues of your trip.
- safety. Bookimed works only with certified hospitals and experienced doctors with good reputation. It guarantees you the high-quality treatment at the most affordable kidney transplant cost.
Bookimed medical coordinators support patients 24/7. Bookimed services are free for a patient and do not affect the kidney transplant surgery cost.