Full disclosure. I pushed to share this story because it touched me personally. My brother Jordan donated a kidney to my other brother Jeff. They were a match.
For two local families, direct donation wasn't an option. Laurie Boatsman of Maple Valley was prepared to donated a kidney to her husband Patrick, but wasn't a match. Janis Dougan of Whatcom County wanted to give a kidney to her brother Steve Engholm, but had the same problem.
The nephrology and transplant teams at UW Medicine realized that, as pairs, they were compatible. In January, for the first time ever at the hospital, UW Medical Center performed the in-house double kidney exchange. It's a process that takes resources. Four patients. Four separate surgeries. Four individual medical teams.
The surgeries were all a success.
Due to restrictions protecting the donor process, the two families involved had never met until now... and we were there to see the emotional connection.