Organ Transplantation

To ensure an equitable distribution of organs for transplant, Congress established a regionalized system of organ distribution in 1984. However, despite this system, by the mid-1990’s, more than 4,000 potential transplant patients still died each year waiting for organs. With the objective of increasing cadaveric organ transplants, further rules were developed to ensure that families of dying patients were better informed about the potential benefits of organ donations. The rules regarding organ transplants and notification of potential donor families cover all hospitals participating in Medicare, nearly 4,900 short-term general hospitals nationwide. The Duke Center for Health Policy has developed a draft working paper assessing the costs and benefits of organ transplant regulation, including hospital provision of transplant-related data and the organ transplant sales ban (pdf)

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