When it comes to organ transplants, disabled Floridians will no longer be at the back of the line.
Sen. Aaron Bean‘s bill to allow disabled donors to receive organs is ready for the Senate floor.
The goal: to “protect” access to medical procedures regardless of disability status, ensuring universal access to organ transplant under the aegis of “life saving treatment.”
The legislation would prevent health care facilities, insurers (HMOs and group insurance policies included), and other entities from denying organ transplant services to people with developmental or intellectual disabilities solely on that basis.
The Americans with Disabilities Act prevents discrimination based on disability, but transplant facilitators often are unaware.
People denied transplants often don’t know that they can find out the reason for refusal, as the National Council on Disability noted in a report last year.
A common complaint among advocates for those with various disabilities: the opaqueness of the decision making process by transplant centers.
The measure is non-controversial for legislators: the Rep. Jason Fischer bill in the House passed 117-0.
A second Bean bill also passed the committee Thursday.
The bill (SB 82), filed by Senate Health and Human Services Appropriations Chairman Aaron Bean, a Fernandina Beach Republican, would require the state in October to begin a competitive bidding process to contract with two organizations to provide support-coordination services.
The bill also would require the state to hire an outside organization to determine whether people’s iBudgets should be increased because of “significant additional needs.” Currently, the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, which administers the iBudget program, makes those determinations.
Florida Politics’ Renzo Downey and the News Service of Florida contributed to this post.