“With this new Transplant Passport app, we’re using technology to streamline the experience for patients and their families. It reduces anxiety so patients can focus on education and participation in their own care.” - Travis L. Watson, director of quality, UPMC Transplant Services


Grant Application

Travis L. Watson, UPMC Transplant Services, in partnership with the PFCC (Patient and Family Centered Care) Pre-Transplant Work Group: Dan Foust, Roy Hill, Mark Vilovic, Debbie Good, Beth Kallenborn, Erin Tecca, Shelley Zomak, Shelia Fedorek,Bernice Kula, Chris Wood, Rachel Cain, Deb Maurer

Proposed Innovation

Organ transplant patients must go through extensive evaluation and care, both before and after their procedure. The complex regimen of medications, appointments, laboratory and clinical testing, and specialist consults can be exhausting and daunting for patients — who are nearing end-organ failure – and their caregivers.

Creating a Transplant Passport app that functions on mobile devices provides a useful and reassuring interactive guide for patients navigating through the transplant process.


The initial “hardcopy” version of the Transplant Passport was designed and implemented with great success. Much like an international passport, it featured stickers with information for each step of the transplant process. That helped the patient and provider track progress and served as a reminder of what still needed to be done.

Working with an outside vendor, the project team opted to develop the mobile app as a mobile website instead of a smartphone app in order to reach a wider audience. As the app progressed, the team saw many other potential uses but decided to keep it close to the original intent as an electronic version of the paper Transplant Passport. The app underwent extensive testing and modifications during development.


After several internal delays, app development was completed in July 2017 and developers began working with Information Systems Development to install the mobile app on UPMC test and production servers.

The Transplant Passport Mobile Device app is expected to empower patients and their caregivers with the knowledge they need to move seamlessly through care. Patients will do more than simply follow a set of appointment dates; they will participate in their journey as team members with an understanding of each test and the role of each person they meet. And, because the information will be stored on a mobile device, doctors, nurses and other care team members will be able to review it together to track progress and discuss results.