When Kentucky lawmakers convene in January, they’ll be asked to consider removing a barrier to live organ donation.
A bill pre-filed for the 2022 session, BR 267, protects organ donors from the risk of losing income or employment. The measure gives Kentuckians donating an organ or bone marrow one week of paid leave.
The bill is sponsored by State Rep. Shawn McPherson who says no one should be penalized for performing a life-saving service.
“When you decide to give a part of your body to someone else and then you’re going to live the rest of your life, you always have questions about how will that affect, how will that affect my longevity," McPherson told WKU Public Radio. "To me, that’s the real hero, the person willing to live with one less part of their body so that someone else can have a better quality of life.”
McPherson is a Republican from Scottsville who got companion legislation through the General Assembly this year. That measure shields living organ donors from insurance companies raising the cost of coverage.
According to Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates (KODA), about 1,000 of the state's residents are currently waiting on an organ transplant.