FLORENCE, S.C. (WMBF) - The Medical University of South Carolina in Florence announced Thursday a new transplant and specialty outreach clinic to better serve their patients in the Pee Dee.
Before someone can get a transplant, they have to undergo an extensive process of lab work or 'homework' as officials call it.
Dr. Derek DuBay, the associate director of the Transplant Department, said a patient will still have to do a one-day evaluation in Charleston, but will now be able to complete the majority of their homework in Florence.
“We know that we’re not meeting that need by simply hanging a shingle up and saying if you want what we have come to Charleston and get it,” DuBay said. “We very much want a kidney transplant to be available to everyone not just the haves versus the have nots."
Estina Greene, a transplant recipient, was on the panel along with several healthcare officials to talk about her journey after finding out she had a lung disease. She received her lung transplant in December 2017.
"I used to be on oxygen, pulling the tank, sleeping with oxygen at night, but now I don’t have to do none of that or pull it any more,” Greene said.
With the Pee Dee area having one of the highest rates of kidney failure in the country, DuBay said the goal of the outreach clinic is to make it easy for local patients to access care.
“Our patients can walk to the front door and come and it’s really a one-stop-shop where they can get their laboratory, their radiographic study,” DuBay said.
DuBay said patients also have access to telehealth transplant medicine.