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Effort to get revised UAGA adopted by all 50 states off to promising start.

When the first revision of the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act (UAGA) in 20 years was approved by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL) in June of 2006, it represented the first step in a long process to get it approved in all 50 states.

NCCUSL delegates and the transplant community were acutely aware that the revised UAGA of 1987 was ultimately only approved by 26 states and vowed to conduct an all out effort to get the new act passed by all 50 within the next two years.

That effort is off to a good start.

On February 12 the revised UAGA was approved by the American Bar Association's House of Delegates at its mid-year meeting in Miami, FL. In addition, according to the Eye Bank Association of America (EBAA), as of late January the revised act has already been introduced in 13 states and/or territories and the District of Columbia.

The new UAGA updates the act, which was originally promulgated in 1968 and adopted by all 50 states, "in light of changes in federal law and related developments in the field of organ donation," NCCUSL said in a press release announcing the ABA approval.

As in prior versions, the revised act provides that any individual may make an anatomical gift by signing a document of gift. No witnesses are necessary and the donor's wishes are not subject to change by others. Some of the other revisions include:

*expands the number of individuals allowed to consent to make anatomical gifts;

*encourages the use of donor registries and provides standards for their operations; and

*clarifies that unspecified donations should go to recognized transplant organizations responsible for allocating organs.

National transplant organizations endorsing the new UAGA include the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Association of Tissue Banks, the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations, the Cornea Society, the Eye Bank Association of America, the National Kidney Foundation, and the United Network for Organ Sharing.

The EBAA said to date the revised UAGA has been introduced in the following 13 states and/or territories: (1) Arizona; (2) District of Columbia; (3) Idaho; (4) Kansas; (5) Montana; (6) North Dakota; (7) US Virgin Islands; (9) Utah; (10) Virginia; (11) Washington; (12) New Jersey; and (13) Indiana.

Bills are expected to be introduced in the following states this year: (1) Alabama; (2) Arkansas; (3) California; (4) Colorado; (5) Iowa; (6) Maryland; (7) Michigan; (8) Minnesota; (9) Missouri; (10) New York; (11) Ohio; (12) Oklahoma; (13) Oregon; (14) Vermont; and (15) Wyoming.

Carlyle "Connie" Ring, Jr., of Washington, DC, chair of the UAGA revision drafting committee, is on record predicting the NCCUSL expects the revised act to be introduced in 40 states by the end of the year.

Easy reference materials and supporting materials relating to the revised UAGA are available online at The entire text of the model act is also included on the Web site.

The NCCUSL is comprised of more than 350 practicing lawyers, governmental lawyers, judges, law professors and lawyer-legislators, who are appointed by each state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands to research, draft and promote enactment of uniform state laws in areas of state laws where uniformity is desirable and practical. It has been in existence for 116 years and has provided states with more than 250 uniform acts. Information on all the acts is available on the NCCUSL Web site:
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Title Annotation:Uniform Anatomical Gift Act
Comment:Effort to get revised UAGA adopted by all 50 states off to promising start.(Uniform Anatomical Gift Act)
Publication:Transplant News
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2007
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