New rules proposed to increase organ transplants

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The U.S. government recently proposed two new rules to help increase the availability of organs for the 113,000 Americans on waitlists for lifesaving organ transplants.

Dr. Christopher Marsh, division chief of the Scripps Center for Organ Transplantation at Scripps Green Hospital, stopped by Good Morning San Diego to discuss the proposed changes.

The first rule involves people who donate an organ while they’re alive – it would remove financial barriers by allowing them to be reimbursed for expenses they incur as a living donor – things like lost wages, child-care and elder-care.

The second rule involves the organizations across the U.S. that collect deceased organs for transplant – called Organ Procurement Organizations.

Under the proposal, Medicare will calculate each OPO’s donation and transplantation rates using federal death records that show the entire pool of potential donors each has to draw from — anyone 75 or younger who dies in a hospital of conditions that wouldn’t automatically preclude donation.

The rules are open for public comment for 60 days before taking effect.

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