Kids’ Organ Transplant Policy Receives One-Year Change

The national policy that governs the way organ donations and transplants work has been given a one-year change to allow children under age 12 to be eligible for priority on adult transplant lists.  The temporary change was prompted by a lawsuit filed by the family of 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan, who has cystic fibrosis and needs a lung transplant.  More from CNN:

The Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network’s executive committee approved the change in a conference call. It said in a statement that doctors may submit a request to a national review board to have a child who is younger than 12 put on a list for older patients.

The board has seven days to approve the request, taking into account the child’s lung allocation score.

The policy change is valid until July 2014, when it will be re-evaluated.

The temporary exception stems from a case filed by the family of 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan, who has cystic fibrosis and needs new lungs. A federal junction last week ordered U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to tell the OPTN to set aside the rule, but the injunction was good for only 10 days.

“We consider this a tremendous win for Sarah and all kids waiting for lungs,” her mother, Janet, said in a statement on Facebook. “I hope Sarah’s story moves people to become organ donors, because more than any ruling it is the heroes who donate their organs that save lives.”

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  1. [...] The 11-year-old, who has cystic fibrosis, underwent a double lung transplant earlier this summer after a federal judge temporarily changed the national policy governing organ transplants, allowing Murnaghan to be placed on adult transplant lists. More from NBC News: [...]