States Push to Ban Organ Transplant Discrimination


Push Is On for States to Ban Organ Transplant Discrimination

by Sara Reardon/KHN

Griffin Dalrymple is an energetic 7-year-old who loves going to school in Eureka, Montana. But two years ago, the boy described by his mother, Jayci, as a “ball of fire” was suddenly knocked back by severe bacterial pneumonia that hospitalized him for two weeks.

As her son lay in the intensive care unit with a tube in his tiny lungs, Jayci began imagining worst-case scenarios. She worried that if Griffin ended up needing a lung transplant, he might be refused because he has Down syndrome.

“It was terrifying knowing that they could deny him certain lifesaving services,” she said.

Denying organ transplants to people with intellectual and neurodevelopmental disabilities like Down syndrome or autism is common in the United States, even though it is illegal under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

According to one widely cited 2008 study, 44% of organ transplant centers said they would not add a child with some level of neurodevelopmental disability to the organ transplant list. Eighty-five percent might consider the disability as a factor in deciding whether to list the person.

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  1. No one should sign up to be a potential organ donor until the economic discrimination is removed.

  2. I wonder if it is a current practice to give an organ from the other sex to a patient ? I think NOT according to my memory. Please confirm.

    If yes, then now it will surely be “forbidden” to “sex-discriminate” organs in a transplantation !!! And transgenders ought to accept organs from donors of their sexual orientation… isn’t it !? LOL

  3. I belonged to the Order of the Alhambra and worked with the mentally disabled. Never have I felt so much love; both given and reciprocated; both by families and those helping. This is not overstated.

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