Sarah's Fight: Decision Expected Today On Under 12 Donor Policy - KMSP-TV

Sarah's Fight: Decision Expected Today On Under 12 Donor Policy

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One local girl's fight for a lung donation could permanently change the way kids qualify for transplants.

Remember Sarah Murnaghan? She made national headlines while getting a controversial lung transplant in Philadelphia last year.

At just 10 years old, Sarah underwent two double lung transplants while battling cystic fibrosis. A judge's order allowed her to get on an adult organ donor waiting list, despite her young age.

Under the original guidelines, children under the age of 12 had to wait for pediatric lungs to be available, while adult lungs could not be offered to children until they had been offered to adults and adolescents first.

The Murnaghans argued the rule keeping Sarah off the adult list was "discriminatory."

Originally, former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius refused to grant an exception to the rule. But on June 5, 2013, a federal court judge granted a temporary order that allowed Sarah to join an adult organ transplant list.

Just seven days after the ruling, Sarah received a pair of adult lungs and underwent her first lung transplant. However, she suffered from a complication called primary graft failure (PGF), which caused her health to deteriorate after the initial operation.

Fortunately, three days later on June 15, the family was told that a new pair of adult lungs was available for Sarah, and she underwent a second transplant which ultimately was a success.

The Murnaghans have not only been fighting for perfect life for the the last several years but has also been fight to go change, donor rules to help more children qualify for transplants.

A special court order could be made permanent today. The donor board is expected to speak at court. There will also be a vote on the proposed change.

FOX 29 is expected to hear from the Murnagahan Family after the vote comes down.

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