Transplantation is the life-saving therapy for patients suffering from end-organ failure, and as such, equitable access to transplantation (ATT) is of paramount importance. Unfortunately, gender/sex-based disparities exist, and despite the transplant community’s awareness of this injustice, gender/sex-based disparities have persisted for more than two decades. Importantly, no legislation or allocation policy has addressed inequity in ATT that women disproportionately face. In fact, introduction of the model for end-stage liver disease-based liver allocation system in 2002 widened the gender disparity gap and it continues to be in effect today. Moreover, women suffering from kidney disease are consistently less likely to be referred for transplant evaluation and subsequently less likely to achieve a kidney transplant, yet they comprise the majority of living kidney donors.
Acknowledging gender/sex-based disparities in ATT is the first step toward interventions aimed at mitigating this long-standing injustice in healthcare.
This article provides a background of end-stage liver and kidney disease in women, summarizes the existing literature describing the issue of gender disparity in ATT, and identifies potential areas of intervention and future investigation.

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