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New Texas law prohibits discrimination against organ transplants based on disability

"Daniel's Law" will prevent health care providers from preventing an organ transplant based solely on the person's disability.
Credit: Sophie Park/The Texas Tribune

AUSTIN, Texas — One of the new laws going into effect in Texas on September 1 is meant to help stop discrimination against people with disabilities.

"Daniel's Law", which came out of House Bill 119 during the 87th Legislative Session, prohibits health care providers from preventing someone from getting an organ transplant based solely on their disability.

This law covers several aspects of this issue, including banning providers from refusing to refer individuals to transplant centers or place them on a waitlist.

According to the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities, the exception to considering the person's individually in these situations comes when it is considered medically significant to the transplant.

Health care providers are also required to offer reasonable modifications on services to make them more accessible to patients with disabilities unless they can demonstrate the modifications would greatly alter the service. 

The bill was authored by Representative Brooks Landgraf from Odessa.

"House Bill 119 seeks to ensure that no Texan is ever denied an organ transplant based solely on their disability. This idea was brought to me by a native West Texan who tragically lost her brother, Daniel, in 2015 after being denied a lifesaving organ transplant due to his disability. What happened to Daniel and his family was unacceptable and should never happen again in Texas," Landgraf said in a statement.

Joint authors for the bill were representatives John Turner, James White and Justin Holland.

While the bill officially became law on September 1, 2021, agencies have until no later than January 1, 2022, to adopt rules necessary to accommodate these changes moving forward.

For more information on the bill, you can click or tap here.