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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 1985




American Bar Association




Organ transplantation has been a favorite topic of health lawyers since its inception. Organ procurement was addressed with the adoption of the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act in all fifty states, and "brain death" has been recognized both judicially and legislatively across the United States. Nonetheless, it is now apparent that the major problems in organ transplantation are not legal in nature, and thus neither are the solutions. Heart and liver transplants are extreme and expensive medical interventions that few individuals can afford and few hospitals can offer. In an era of economic scarcity, how (if at all) should organ transplant procedures and other extreme and expensive treatments be introduced into the health care delivery system?

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