Organ Donation and Transplantation Data - Preliminary Results

Sharing preliminary (unvalidated) results, this national organ donation and transplantation COVID-19 impact dashboard was developed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is intended to help the community better understand, in near real time, the impact the COVID-19 crisis has had, either directly or indirectly on organ donation and transplantation practices in Canada and by extension, what impact these changes have had on potential donors and transplant candidates. 

Reporting of Covid-19 case data was discontinued May 2023.

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This data dashboard is comprised of four key metrics that serve as indicators for the performance of the organ donation and transplant system, both provincial and nationally.

  • Deceased Donor Referrals (by type): the referral rate measures the number of potential deceased organ donors who were referred to a provincial Organ Donation Organization during a given period. This metric is important to understand the rate at which hospitals can refer potentially suitable patients to ODOs for deceased organ donation during times of crisis.
  • Actual Organ Donors (by type): This data represents the number of donors who had at least one solid organ recovered and subsequently transplanted during a given period. The variation in these numbers are influenced by donor availability, provincial infrastructure, hospital capacity and external risk factors.
  • Transplants: This data captures the number of transplants (divided by renal and non-renal figures on the dashboard) during a given period. As many transplant programs have either suspended or reduced their activities temporarily due to COVID, changes in transplant rate best indicate the impact on access to organ replacement therapies for Canadians.
  • Waitlist: this data demonstrates the number of active patients across the country that are listed for a transplant by organ type and the number of patients who have died on the waitlist. The reality is that active waitlist data and mortality data in Canada does not accurately capture the need for transplantation and under-represents the true demand for transplant in Canada.  These numbers are heavily dependent on varying listing practices across Canada, however sharing this data can help the community better understand the impact of COVID on those waiting for transplants.

Canadian Blood Services together with provincial Organ Donation Organizations and partners have committed to collecting and reporting on this data in two-week intervals on a regular basis in order to measure the effect the pandemic is having on the organ donation and transplant system and to monitor gradual resumption of donation and transplantation.

Data Sources: The Canadian data collected for this dashboard was compiled from data submitted by a network of provincial partners and representatives from provincial organ donation organizations. The data was standardized and validated to the greatest degree possible by Canadian Blood Services. The dashboard will be updated regularly as new data becomes available.  

Acknowledgements: This report was made possible through the collective effort and input from provincial Organ Donation Organizations, members of Canadian donation and transplantation community and Canadian Blood Services.

Use of data: Extracts may be reviewed, reproduced or translated for educational purposes, research or private study, but not for use in conjunction with commercial purposes. Any use of this information should be accompanied by an acknowledgement of Canadian Blood Services as the source. Any other use of this publication is strictly prohibited without prior permission from Canadian Blood Services.

Questions: For assistance in the development of this content for research, presentation, publication, or other reporting purposes, including documentation in accessible format or for any other questions, concerns or requests regarding the dashboard or its content, please contact us at