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Day of Action on Sept. 22 on Paul's Law: Stop Discrimination in Organ Transplants

posted Sep 7, 2016, 5:48 AM by Jessica Benham   [ updated Sep 13, 2016, 11:40 AM ]
Join us on September 22nd, using #PaulsLaw on Twitter and sending emails to or calling your senator (You can find your legislator here). Paul's Law has already passed the House unanimously. See this link for an email template to use when contacting your senator. Feel free to attach this one-page information sheet to the email. Check to see if your senator is already supporting the bill here. If your senator sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee [list available here], where the bill is currently sitting, add that you'd like your senator to work to get the bill out of committee and up for a vote. 

Paul’s Law, introduced by Representative Joseph A. Petrarca and by Senator John Sabatina and a long list of bi-partisan co-sponsors would ensure that people with disabilities are not discriminated against for organ transplants. The bill is named for Paul Corby, an autistic man from Schuklkill County, who has left ventricular noncompaction, which means his heart is less able to pump blood. Paul was initially not considered a candidate for a heart transplant because he is autistic. Like Paul, many people with disabilities are often denied life-saving organ transplants merely because of their disabilities. The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits this discrimination, but little has been done to enforce the federal law.

Major Provisions of the Bill:
  • Removes mental or physical disability as a disqualifying factor for healthcare institutions deciding whether someone qualifies for a transplant. 
  • Requires healthcare institutions to justify disqualification with medically significant reasons as to why the transplant wouldn’t be successful. 
  • Prevents hospitals from denying transplants if patients have support network to help meet post-operative treatment requirements. 
  • People with disabilities are entitled to equal rights to treatment and care AND TO LIFE. No one should be automatically denied a transplant based on disability alone! 
More detailed information about the bill is located here. Contact Director of Public Policy Jess Benham at jess@autisticpgh.org with questions or comments.
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