Saving a life with living kidney donations

Nate Estrella and Tim Saylor

Born with a rare disease that damages the kidneys, Nate Rivera first went into kidney failure at age 16. The living kidney donation from his father saved his life. But when Nate's illness caused the kidney to fail six years later, none of his family or friends were a match this time.

He didn't think another living kidney donation would be possible – until a stranger stepped in. Read Nate's story.

Kidney Transplant Team

Meet our committed, compassionate kidney specialists

Our kidney transplant specialists are committed to providing you with personalized and compassionate care from your first evaluation through your kidney transplant and for the rest of your life. Team members include kidney transplant physicians, surgeons, nurses, psychologists, dietitians and other care staff.

You are the most important team member

You play a key role in ensuring your kidney transplant is a success. Be sure to take your medications, maintain a proper diet, exercise and notify your kidney transplant team of any problems.

Kidney transplant doctors

Our kidney doctors determine if you are a candidate for a kidney transplant. Our nationally recognized nephrologists monitor and manage all nonsurgical aspects of kidney care. Our transplant surgeons perform the operation and monitor your kidney's function, rejection and any surgical complications.


These physicians monitor and manage recipients’ life functions throughout the transplant process. They specialize in using drugs and other agents to relieve pain during and after surgery, including recovery.

Intensive care transplant nurses

These ICU nurses specialize in the care of transplant patients. They provide lifesaving support for any complicated transplant medical condition.

Non-ICU transplant nurses

After patients leave the transplant ICU, they receive care from specially trained transplant nurses. They provide care during most of your hospital stay.

Kidney transplant coordinators

Our transplant coordinators are specially trained registered nurses. They provide care in every phase of the transplant process, from evaluation to long term follow-up. Coordinators prepare you for kidney transplant, schedule clinic visits, monitor test results and help you understand your medications. They are your primary contacts for any questions you and your family may have.

Financial coordinators

One of our financial coordinators will advise you of your financial options for covering the cost of kidney transplantation. He or she will help determine what part of your kidney transplant surgery, medications and care are covered by Medicare, Medicaid or private insurance. The financial coordinator also can help you find other financial assistance resources, if needed.

Social workers

Our social workers are licensed professionals who provide counseling and support to you and your family. They help you understand and cope with your condition and the kidney transplant process. Social workers also can help with emotional or family issues you may have.

They will determine if you have a qualified caregiver and appropriate family support. They can provide information on community resources such as support groups, transportation and lodging, if you or your family members need a place to stay overnight during treatment.


Our psychologists provide counseling and therapy to help you and your family cope with the stresses associated with chronic disease and kidney transplant. Services include individual and family therapy, stress management training, depression counseling and addiction counseling.


Our pharmacists instruct you and your family about your medications before and after transplantation, and assist with your daily medication schedule.


Our registered dietitians help you manage your nutrition, before and after your kidney transplant. The dietitian will assess your nutrition, make recommendations for your diet and provide help with decreased appetite, weight loss, nausea and vomiting.