Girl Prompts Organ Transplant Policy Review


The case prompted a second family at Sarah's hospital – the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia – to sue to be considered equally on the adult lung waiting list, according to a complaint filed Thursday. Javier Acosta, an 11-year-old from the Bronx who is dying of cystic fibrosis, has now been granted the same exception as Sarah, according to a statement from his lawyer at Pepper Hamilton LLP.

"Javier needs a lung transplant to survive. Without one he will most likely die before his 12th birthday in August," his lawyer wrote in the complaint. "What makes Javier's situation even more heartbreaking is that Javier's brother – another son of plaintiff Milagros Martinez – died two years ago at the age of 11 while waiting for a lung transplant that could have saved his life."

Despite their court victories, the clock is still ticking for Sarah and Javier. A judge could rule to reinstate the under-12 rule on June 14 at the preliminary injunction hearing.

If they don't receive lungs by then, it's not clear whether the duplicate organ candidate records will be deleted. A spokesman for HHS said he could not speculate on what might happen.

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