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Black kidney patients moved up on transplant lists after years of flawed race-based assessments

Jazmin Evans was placed on the kidney transplant waiting list in 2019. In 2023, she received a letter informing her that she should have been placed on the waiting list four years earlier than she was because a race-based assessment that underestimated the severity of her kidney disease. (Courtesy of Jazmin Evans)
Jazmin Evans was placed on the kidney transplant waiting list in 2019. In 2023, she received a letter informing her that she should have been placed on the waiting list four years earlier than she was because a race-based assessment that underestimated the severity of her kidney disease. (Courtesy of Jazmin Evans)

Jazmin Evans, 29, is an accomplished grad student at Temple University where she teaches undergraduate classes and works as a senior editor of a journal on African studies. For most of her time there, she did it while undergoing hours of daily kidney dialysis.

Diagnosed at 17, she was placed on the kidney transplant waiting list in 2019. Then in 2023, she received a shocking letter informing her that she should have been placed on the waiting list four years earlier than she was because of a race-based assessment underestimated the severity of her kidney disease — and also that of 14,000 other Black American kidney patients, who would now be prioritized. She received a transplant in July.

Evans joins host Robin Young to tell her story.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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