April 08,2021

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Wyden and Grassley Applaud Biden Administration for Beginning to Implement Organ Procurement Reforms

After Bipartisan, Bicameral Letter, Biden Administration Makes Effective a Final Rule to Improve Organ Procurement System to Reduce Waste and Save Lives

Washington, D.C. – Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Senator Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, today praised the Biden administration for swiftly making effective a final rule to reform the organ procurement system in the United States, which has had a well-documented series of errors in recent years.

“I’m pleased that the Biden administration has moved quickly to put these transformative improvements to the organ donation system into effect,” Wyden said. “These reforms will save thousands of lives every year, and hold organ procurement organizations accountable.” 

“I’m glad this administration has carried forward the torch lit by the Trump administration in implementing this new rule. It contains much-needed improvements for a system that’s been racked with problems. A more effective and accountable organ procurement system will benefit countless lives and families across the country,” Grassley said.

Last month, Wyden and Grassley sent a bipartisan, bicameral letter to HHS asking for the rule to be put into effect following a government wide regulatory freeze during the presidential transition. The final rule was originally proposed in November of last year by the Trump administration.

GAO found that the revisions in the final rule would “increase donation rates and organ transplantation rates by replacing the current outcome measures with new transparent, reliable, and objective outcome measures” and increase competition for control of open organ donation service areas. According to data from the HHS, this rule will save more than 7,000 lives every year. These reforms also have urgent implications for health equity, as failures of the current organ donation system disproportionately hurt patients of color.