logo
Featured on 40:     Weather Chats     Colon Cam @ 11     Ferguson Grand Jury     Shopping Hours     Weather Discussion    

Pa. girl who took on donor rules gets transplant

FILE – In this May 30, 2013 file photo provided by the Murnaghan family, Sarah Murnaghan, left, lies in her hospital bed next to adopted sister Ella on the 100th day of her stay in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Murnaghen, whose efforts to qualify for an organ donation drew public debate over how donated lungs are allocated was getting a transplant Wednesday, June 12, 2013, at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, her family said. (AP Photo/Murnaghan Family, File)

FILE – In this May 30, 2013 file photo provided by the Murnaghan family, Sarah Murnaghan, left, lies in her hospital bed next to adopted sister Ella on the 100th day of her stay in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Murnaghen, whose efforts to qualify for an organ donation drew public debate over how donated lungs are allocated was getting a transplant Wednesday, June 12, 2013, at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, her family said. (AP Photo/Murnaghan Family, File)

Buy AP Photo Reprints

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A 10-year-old girl whose efforts to qualify for an organ donation drew public debate over how organs are allocated was getting a lung transplant Wednesday, her family said.

Sarah Murnaghan, who suffers from severe cystic fibrosis, was receiving the transplant Wednesday at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, a family spokeswoman said.

Her health was deteriorating when a federal judge intervened last week, giving her a chance at the much larger list of organs from adult donors.

It wasn’t immediately clear if the girl was getting an adult lung. A hospital spokeswoman, Dana Mortensen, said she had no information to release and would not confirm if Murnaghan was getting a transplant.

Murnaghan’s mother, Janet, said in a Facebook post that the family was “overwhelmed with emotions” and thanked all her supporters.

“Today is the start of Sarah’s new beginning and new life!” she wrote, adding that the donor’s family “has experienced a tremendous loss, may God grant them a peace that surpasses understanding.”

Murnaghan’s case could bring change for other children, as another cystic fibrosis patient at the same hospital has also gone to court to be added to the adult donor list. On June 5, federal Judge Michael Baylson in Philadelphia ruled that Murnaghan of Newtown Square, Pa., and 11-year-old Javier Acosta of New York City should be eligible for adult lungs.

Their families challenged existing transplant policy that made children under 12 wait for pediatric lungs to become available or be offered lungs donated by adults after adolescents and adults on the waiting list had been considered. They said pediatric lungs are rarely donated.

The Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network says 31 children under age 11 are on the waiting list for a lung transplant.

Critics warn there could be a downside to having judges intervene in the organ transplant system’s established procedures. Lung transplants are difficult procedures and some say child patients tend to have more trouble with them than adults.

The national organization that manages organ transplants this week resisted making emergency rule changes for children under 12 who are waiting on lungs but created a special appeal and review system to hear such cases.

Associated Press


Comments

WGGB encourages readers to share their thoughts and engage in healthy dialogue about the issues. Comments containing personal attacks, profanity, offensive language or advertising will be removed. Please use the report comment function for any posts you feel should be reviewed. Thank you.
blog comments powered by Disqus