Frequently Asked Questions

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NFT helps establish fundraising campaigns in patient communities. Our trained fundraising consultants work with each campaign to develop personalized fundraising goals and tailored methods to raise funds. NFT also writes personalized appeal letters and works with the media to raise awareness in the community about the patient's needs.

Funds raised are placed in a specified NFT state fund, and NFT tracks donations made in honor of specific patients. NFT then uses the funds to pay for transplant-related expenses. NFT's fundraising campaigns have generated nearly $65 million to assist patients during their transplant journey, and NFT assists more than 2,500 patients annually.

To view our video, which explains more about how NFT helps patients, click here.

  • NFT provides services to transplant candidates awaiting organ and/or tissue transplants, as well as patients who have already received their transplants.
  • The transplant and fundraising efforts must take place in the U.S.

It's easy to sign up for NFT's fundraising assistance program!

Just contact us at 800-489-3863 and ask to speak with a fundraising consultant, who will explain the process of fundraising through NFT. You may also contact us at for this information. After your initial conversation with the consultant, NFT will send you a packet of information, including an application, policy agreement and other materials to begin the process.

Funds raised are placed in an NFT state fund in honor of the patient (i.e. NFT Tennessee Transplant Fund in honor of Jane Doe). Ninety-seven percent (97%) of all funds raised in the community will be used to pay for transplant-related expenses, such as hospital and doctors' bills, co-pays, medications, insurance premiums, and travel expenses. Only three percent (3%) is used for NFT administrative costs.

NFT can help with transplant costs; hospital bills and deposits; co-pays; doctors' appointments; medications; caregiver expenses; insurance premiums, temporary mortgage assistance following the transplant; travel, food and lodging expenses; and more.

The costs will vary for each patient, based on insurance coverage, the type of transplant and the location of the transplant center. Patients will also incur lifetime medical expenses for follow-up care and prescriptions.

Below is a list of average costs for transplants and first-year expenses*. The actual costs may be higher or lower than the figures listed here:

  • Bone Marrow (autologous): $375,000
  • Bone Marrow (allogeneic): $925,000
  • Cornea: $28,000
  • Heart: $1.2 million
  • Intestine: $1.5 million
  • Kidney: $330,000
  • Liver: $735,000
  • Lung: $785,000
  • Double Lung: $1 million
  • Pancreas: $315,000
  • Heart/Lung: $2.3 million
  • Kidney/Pancreas: $550,000
  • Kidney/Heart: $1.5 million
  • Liver/Kidney: $1.2 million

*Data based on the 2014 Milliman Research Report on U.S. organ and tissue transplants.

Our patients' health is our main concern, and we don't want them to worry about fundraising. That's why we request a list of volunteers, and we work directly with the volunteers to plan fundraising activities. Patients are not expected to be involved in the fundraising process; we want them to focus on their health, but we welcome them to be as involved as they want to be.

NFT can also help discover additional volunteer resources in your area. While it's ideal to have many volunteers, NFT can offer assistance even if you only have a few people to help. We also have a Quick Start program for campaigns that don't have enough volunteers to conduct a full campaign.

The transplant itself may be covered; however, the high costs of daily post-transplant medications and unforeseen complications often become very overwhelming for patients. Some insurance policies won't cover bone marrow donor searches -- which can be very expensive -- and others have an inadequate lifetime maximum for coverage that will quickly be exhausted. Many patients must also travel far distances to their transplant centers, which can result in significant travel and lodging expenses.

Transplant recipients require a lifetime of follow-up care and daily anti-rejection medications, which can cost as much as $5,000 per month. Most patients require many prescriptions every day. Even with insurance, the co-pays for multiple medications will add up quickly. Some insurance policies won't cover anti-rejection prescriptions at all or will only cover them for a specified period of time.

Even with "good" insurance, many patients find the financial burdens to be devastating. Plus, insurance coverage could change, so it's important to plan ahead for the future.

It is difficult to think about long-term financial burdens, but we know how expensive it can be to maintain that gift of life. It's very important to prepare for a lifelong financial commitment to take care of your new organ(s).

Unfortunately, there is no way to predict how long it will take to receive a transplant. There are currently more than 118,000 patients awaiting transplants in the United States. Factors that determine a patient's waiting time are the patient's medical status, availability of donors in the patient's area, and the level of match between the donor and recipient.

Absolutely! While the best time to fundraise is before transplant, NFT can help patients at any stage. It's easier to communicate the need, gather momentum and maintain enthusiasm among volunteers and donors if fundraising activities begin prior to the transplant. However, many campaigns continue to fundraise post-transplant, and others don't begin fundraising until after transplant.

NFT is a nonprofit organization, so direct donations to NFT are tax deductible. If people make a donation directly to a patient, that donation will not be tax deductible. Patients who receive direct donations may be subject to taxes for money raised, and could even lose their Medicaid benefit status.

When donors contribute to NFT in a patient's honor, they have the reassurance that the funds are used for the intended transplant-related expenses.

Since 1983, NFT's fundraising campaigns have generated nearly $65 million to assist patients during their transplant journey.

NFT provides fundraising assistance and guidance so you can effectively raise funds in your own community. You have a better idea of what events and activities will succeed in your community, and you probably already have connections with potential donors and volunteers. We will walk you through the process, providing ideas and suggestions along the way, but the patient's volunteers will implement the fundraising activities. NFT will assist with event ideas, suggestions for making an event run smoothly, and editing of marketing materials (brochures, flyers, tickets, etc.). We also write appeal letters for you to send to friends and family, and we work with the media to share patient stories and promote upcoming events. We post all patients on our website so donors can easily click to donate in a patient's honor.

NFT's fundraising campaigns have generated nearly $65 million to assist patients during their transplant journey.

Yes, providing the donation is one where no service or product of value is expected or received in exchange for the contribution. When an individual makes a contribution in exchange for a product or service (such as dinner at a charitable fund raiser, or green fees at a charity golf event), only the portion of the contribution that exceeds the fair market value of the product or service received in exchange for the contribution is tax deductible.

National Foundation for Transplants uses a secured socket layer, which ensures information is safe from hackers.

NFT sends a personalized thank-you letter to all those who contribute (and who do not receive any product or service in exchange for their contribution).  The letter confirms that the donation is tax deductible.