Posted on September 12, 2018 at 10:06 PM
California Governor Jerry Brown has signed A.B. 3211. This legislation makes three amendments to the state advance directive act that clarify the rights of patients regarding organ donation.
(1) The most significant amendment states that by agreeing to make a donation, the donor consents to any temporary medical procedure necessary solely to evaluate and/or maintain the organs and/or tissues for purposes of donation.
Therefore, even if the donor chooses to withhold or withdraw treatment in the fact of an incurable or irreversible condition, the donor agrees, by electing to be a donor, to any temporary medical procedure necessary solely to evaluate and/or maintain the organs for purposes of donation.
The donor could draft around this to clarify that she refuses temporary procedures to preserve the organs, if that means not honoring her wish to not prolong life. But the form makes organ preservation the default priority.
(2) A second amendment revises the advance directive form to provide a general check-off box to allow, upon death, the donation of all organs, tissue, and body parts to be donated for purposes of transplantation, therapy, research, and education. That catch-all is the default. Again the donor can draft around this and add limits and restrictions.
(3) A third amendment clarifies that a person’s choice not to make an organ donation gift in her advance directive is not a refusal to make a gift.