International Workshop on DCD donors: Uncontrolled & Controlled

In the recent years donation after cardio-circulatory death (DCD) donors, either from an uncontrolled or a controlled DCD program, have been a focus of intense interest in the transplant community, based on the high potential they have to increase the number of organ donors.

On one side, uncontrolled DCD donors – in whom cardiac arrest occurs unexpectedly, typically outside the hospital setting, and who are declared dead after unsuccessful attempts at resuscitation – has a huge potential to significantly expand the donor pool. In spite of its estimated potential, the actual use of organs from uncontrolled DCD donors for transplant is not sufficient. While many transplant groups across the globe are interested in initiating uncontrolled DCD programs, they lack the experience necessary to appropriately manage these donors during organ maintenance, recovery, and transplantation, in order to be able to achieve posttransplant outcomes similar to conventional donors.

On the other side, controlled DCD donors – in whom death diagnosis is certified by circulatory criteria while admitted to an intensive care unit after proceeding with a withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment (WLST), agreed by their medical team and based on the futility of treatment and the absence of prognosis, or in the context of a refusal of treatment – is a procedure that is becoming more and more common in the ICUs of transplant hospitals.

Training transplant professionals in the donation process and preservation techniques necessary to obtain viable organs from uncontrolled and controlled DCD donors is fundamental to expand the use of organs from this under-utilized resource. Hospital Clínic in Barcelona is a pioneering center in the use of organs from uncontrolled and controlled DCD donors.


  • To provide transplant professionals with the knowledge and technical skills necessary to organize the uncontrolled and controlled DCD process and adequately maintain potential donors to obtain organs for transplant.
  • To discuss the results of these procedures, including potential pitfalls, areas for improvements, and perspectives toward the future

Adressed to

Health care professionals involved in uncontrolled and controlled DCD, including but not limited to emergency, intensive care and anaesthesia medical physicians, transplant coordinators and surgeons, working or interested in working in the field.


Didactic sessions

  • Uncontrolled DCD and death diagnosis.
  • Controlled DCD and death confirmation.
  • WLST: withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment.
  • Donor preservation
  • Organ recovery: kidney, liver, heart, lungs.
  • Clinical cases.

Human simulator

  • Uncontrolled DCD
  • Controlled DCD.

Animal lab

  • nRP procedure.
  • Organ recovery.
  • Ex-situ evaluation.
  • Ex-vivo preservation machines.


Educational Method

This is a blended program that includes an online period of training and face to face sessions. The online course lasts for 2 weeks and it is scheduled before the face to face sessions to provide participants the basis of the contents of the course. In the face to face course, both didactic and hands-on skills sessions are represented during 2 full days by a multidisciplinary group of professionals. Skills sessions are performed in a laboratory setting, using both a human simulator and a pig model, while didactic sessions include the use of presentations and videos.


New dates 2021

Course Fee




To be determined

Scientific Committee

  • Constantino Fondevila. Liver Transplant Unit, Clinic Institute of Digestive and Metabolic Diseases (ICMDIM)
  • Fritz Diekmann. Kidney Transplant Unitm, Clinic Institute of Nephrology and Urology (ICNU)
  • Ramon Adalia, Transplant Coordination Unit, Medical Direction.
  • Martí Manyalich, Assessor of Transplantation, Medical Direction.

Organized alongside with Aula Clínic