63 FR 16332, Apr. 2, 1998, unless otherwise noted.
(b) The provisions of § 121.13 apply to the prohibition set forth in section 301 of the National Organ Transplant Act, as amended.
(c) The provisions of § 121.14 apply to the reimbursement of specified incidental non-medical expenses incurred toward living organ donation under section 377 of the Public Health Service Act, as amended.
(d) In accordance with section 1138 of the Social Security Act, hospitals in which organ transplants are performed and which participate in the programs under titles XVIII or XIX of the Social Security Act, and organ procurement organizations designated under section 1138(b) of the Social Security Act, are subject to the requirements of this part.
[85 FR 59444, Sept. 22, 2020]
As used in this part -
Act means the Public Health Service Act, as amended.
Designated transplant program means a transplant program that has been found to meet the requirements of § 121.9.
Family member means a family member of a transplant candidate, transplant recipient, or organ donor.
OPTN computer match program means a set of computer-based instructions which compares data on a cadaveric organ donor with data on transplant candidates on the waiting list and ranks the candidates according to OPTN policies to determine the priority for allocating the donor organ(s).
Organ means a human kidney, liver, heart, lung, pancreas, intestine (including the esophagus, stomach, small and/or large intestine, or any portion of the gastrointestinal tract) or vascularized composite allograft (defined in this section). Blood vessels recovered from an organ donor during the recovery of such organ(s) are considered part of an organ with which they are procured for purposes of this part if the vessels are intended for use in organ transplantation and labeled “For use in organ transplantation only.”
Organ donor means a human being who is the source of an organ for transplantation into another human being.
Organ procurement organization or OPO means an entity so designated by the Secretary under section 1138(b) of the Social Security Act.
Organ procurement and transplantation network or OPTN means the network established pursuant to section 372 of the Act.
Potential transplant recipient or potential recipient means a transplant candidate who has been ranked by the OPTN computer match program as the person to whom an organ from a specific cadaveric organ donor is to be offered.
Scientific Registry means the registry of information on transplant recipients established pursuant to section 373 of the Act.
Secretary means the Secretary of Health and Human Services and any official of the Department of Health and Human Services to whom the authority involved has been delegated.
Transplant candidate means an individual who has been identified as medically suited to benefit from an organ transplant and has been placed on the waiting list by the individual's transplant program.
Transplant hospital means a hospital in which organ transplants are performed.
Transplant physician means a physician who provides non-surgical care and treatment to transplant patients before and after transplant.
Transplant program means a component within a transplant hospital which provides transplantation of a particular type of organ.
Transplant recipient means a person who has received an organ transplant.
Transplant surgeon means a physician who provides surgical care and treatment to transplant recipients.
Vascularized composite allograft means a body part:
(1) That is vascularized and requires blood flow by surgical connection of blood vessels to function after transplantation;
(2) Containing multiple tissue types;
(3) Recovered from a human donor as an anatomical/structural unit;
(4) Transplanted into a human recipient as an anatomical/structural unit;
(5) Minimally manipulated (i.e., processing that does not alter the original relevant characteristics of the organ relating to the organ's utility for reconstruction, repair, or replacement);
(6) For homologous use (the replacement or supplementation of a recipient's organ with an organ that performs the same basic function or functions in the recipient as in the donor);
(7) Not combined with another article such as a device;
(8) Susceptible to ischemia and, therefore, only stored temporarily and not cryopreserved; and
(9) Susceptible to allograft rejection, generally requiring immunosuppression that may increase infectious disease risk to the recipient.
Waiting list means the OPTN computer-based list of transplant candidates.
(a) Organization of the OPTN.
(1) The OPTN shall establish a Board of Directors of whatever size the OPTN determines appropriate. The Board of Directors shall include:
(i) Approximately 50 percent transplant surgeons or transplant physicians;
(ii) At least 25 percent transplant candidates, transplant recipients, organ donors and family members. These members should represent the diversity of the population of transplant candidates, transplant recipients, organ donors and family members served by the OPTN including, to the extent practicable, the minority and gender diversity of this population. These members shall not be employees of, or have a similar relationship with OPOs, transplant centers, voluntary health organizations, transplant coordinators, histocompatibility experts, or other non-physician transplant professionals; however, the Board may waive this requirement for not more than 50 percent of these members; and
(iii) Representatives of OPOs, transplant hospitals, voluntary health associations, transplant coordinators, histocompatibility experts, non-physician transplant professionals, and the general public.
(2) The Board of Directors shall elect an Executive Committee from the membership of the Board. The Executive Committee shall include at least one general public member, one OPO representative, approximately 50 percent transplant surgeons and transplant physicians, and at least 25 percent transplant candidates, transplant recipients, organ donors, and family members.
(3) The Board of Directors shall appoint an Executive Director of the OPTN. The Executive Director may be reappointed upon the Board's determination that the responsibilities of this position have been accomplished successfully.
(4) The Board of Directors shall establish such other committees as are necessary to perform the duties of the OPTN. Committees established by the Board of Directors shall include:
(i) Representation by transplant coordinators, organ procurement organizations, and transplant hospitals, and at least one transplant candidate, transplant recipient, organ donor or family member; and
(ii) To the extent practicable, minority and gender representation reflecting the diversity of the population of transplant candidates, transplant recipients, organ donors and family members served by the OPTN.
(b) Membership of the OPTN.
(1) The OPTN shall admit and retain as members the following:
(i) All organ procurement organizations;
(ii) Transplant hospitals participating in the Medicare or Medicaid programs; and
(iii) Other organizations, institutions, and individuals that have an interest in the fields of organ donation or transplantation.
(2) To apply for membership in the OPTN:
(i) An OPO shall provide to the OPTN the name and address of the OPO, and the latest year of designation under section 1138(b) of the Social Security Act;
(ii) A transplant hospital shall provide to the OPTN the name and address of the hospital, a list of its transplant programs by type of organ; and
(iii) Any other organization, institution, or individual eligible under paragraph (c)(1)(iii) of this section shall demonstrate to the OPTN an interest in the fields of organ donation or transplantation.
(3) The OPTN shall accept or reject as members entities or individuals described in paragraph (c)(1)(iii) of this section within 90 days.
(4) Applicants rejected for membership in the OPTN may appeal to the Secretary. Appeals shall be submitted in writing within 30 days of rejection of the application. The Secretary may:
(i) Deny the appeal; or
(ii) Direct the OPTN to take action consistent with the Secretary's response to the appeal.
(c) Corporate status of the OPTN.
(1) The OPTN shall be a private, not-for-profit entity.
(2) The requirements of this section do not apply to any parent, sponsoring, or affiliated organization of the OPTN, or to any activities of the contracting organization that are not integral to the operation of the OPTN. Such an organization is free to establish its own corporate procedures.
(3) No OPTN member is required to become a member of any organization that is a parent, sponsor, contractor, or affiliated organization of the OPTN, to comply with the by-laws of any such organization, or to assume any corporate duties or obligations of any such organization.
(d) Effective date. The organization designated by the Secretary as the OPTN shall have until June 30, 2000, or six months from its initial designation as the OPTN, whichever is later, to meet the requirements of this section, except that the Secretary may extend such period for good cause.
(a) The OPTN Board of Directors shall be responsible for developing, with the advice of the OPTN membership and other interested parties, policies within the mission of the OPTN as set forth in section 372 of the Act and the Secretary's contract for the operation of the OPTN, including:
(1) Policies for the equitable allocation of cadaveric organs in accordance with § 121.8;
(2) Policies, consistent with recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, for the testing of organ donors and follow-up of transplant recipients to prevent the spread of infectious diseases;
(3) Policies that reduce inequities resulting from socioeconomic status, including, but not limited to:
(i) Ensuring that payment of the registration fee is not a barrier to listing for patients who are unable to pay the fee;
(ii) Procedures for transplant hospitals to make reasonable efforts to obtain from all available sources, financial resources for patients unable to pay such that these patients have an opportunity to obtain a transplant and necessary follow-up care;
(iii) Recommendations to private and public payers and service providers on ways to improve coverage of organ transplantation and necessary follow-up care; and
(iv) Reform of allocation policies based on assessment of their cumulative effect on socioeconomic inequities;
(4) Policies regarding the training and experience of transplant surgeons and transplant physicians in designated transplant programs as required by § 121.9;
(5) Policies for nominating officers and members of the Board of Directors; and
(6) Policies on such other matters as the Secretary directs.
(b) The Board of Directors shall:
(1) Provide opportunity for the OPTN membership and other interested parties to comment on proposed policies and shall take into account the comments received in developing and adopting policies for implementation by the OPTN; and
(2) Provide to the Secretary, at least 60 days prior to their proposed implementation, proposed policies it recommends to be enforceable under § 121.10 (including allocation policies). These policies will not be enforceable until approved by the Secretary. The Board of Directors shall also provide to the Secretary, at least 60 days prior to their proposed implementation, proposed policies on such other matters as the Secretary directs. The Secretary will refer significant proposed policies to the Advisory Committee on Organ Transplantation established under § 121.12, and publish them in the Federal Register for public comment. The Secretary also may seek the advice of the Advisory Committee on Organ Transplantation established under § 121.12 on other proposed policies, and publish them in the Federal Register for public comment. The Secretary will determine whether the proposed policies are consistent with the National Organ Transplant Act and this part, taking into account the views of the Advisory Committee and public comments. Based on this review, the Secretary may provide comments to the OPTN. If the Secretary concludes that a proposed policy is inconsistent with the National Organ Transplant Act or this part, the Secretary may direct the OPTN to revise the proposed policy consistent with the Secretary's direction. If the OPTN does not revise the proposed policy in a timely manner, or if the Secretary concludes that the proposed revision is inconsistent with the National Organ Transplant Act or this part, the Secretary may take such other action as the Secretary determines appropriate, but only after additional consultation with the Advisory Committee on the proposed action.
(c) The OPTN Board of Directors shall provide the membership and the Secretary with copies of its policies as they are adopted, and make them available to the public upon request. The Secretary will publish lists of OPTN policies in the Federal Register, indicating which ones are enforceable under § 121.10 or subject to potential sanctions of section 1138 of the Social Security Act. The OPTN shall also continuously maintain OPTN policies for public access on the Internet, including current and proposed policies.
(d) Any interested individual or entity may submit to the Secretary in writing critical comments related to the manner in which the OPTN is carrying out its duties or Secretarial policies regarding the OPTN. Any such comments shall include a statement of the basis for the comments. The Secretary will seek, as appropriate, the comments of the OPTN on the issues raised in the comments related to OPTN policies or practices. Policies or practices that are the subject of critical comments remain in effect during the Secretary's review, unless the Secretary directs otherwise based on possible risk to the health of patients or to public safety. The Secretary will consider the comments in light of the National Organ Transplant Act and the regulations under this part and may consult with the Advisory Committee on Organ Transplantation established under § 121.12. After this review, the Secretary may:
(1) Reject the comments;
(2) Direct the OPTN to revise the policies or practices consistent with the Secretary's response to the comments; or
(3) Take such other action as the Secretary determines appropriate.
(e) The OPTN shall implement policies and shall:
(1) Provide information to OPTN members about these policies and the rationale for them; and
(2) Update policies developed in accordance with this section to accommodate scientific and technological advances.
(3) Identify all covered body parts in any policies specific to vascularized composite allografts, defined in § 121.2.
(a) A transplant hospital which is an OPTN member may list individuals, consistent with the OPTN's criteria under § 121.8(b)(1), only for a designated transplant program.
(b) Transplant hospitals shall assure that individuals are placed on the waiting list as soon as they are determined to be candidates for transplantation. The OPTN shall advise transplant hospitals of the information needed for such listing.
(c) An OPTN member shall pay a registration fee to the OPTN for each transplant candidate it places on the waiting list. The amount of such fee shall be calculated to cover (together with contract funds awarded by the Secretary) the reasonable costs of operating the OPTN and shall be determined by the OPTN with the approval of the Secretary. No less often than annually, and whether or not a change is proposed, the OPTN shall submit to the Secretary a statement of its proposed registration fee, together with such supporting information as the Secretary finds necessary to determine the reasonableness or adequacy of the fee schedule and projected revenues. This submission is due at least three months before the beginning of the OPTN's fiscal year. The Secretary will approve, modify, or disapprove the amount of the fee within a reasonable time of receiving the OPTN's submission.
The suitability of organs donated for transplantation shall be determined as follows:
(a) Tests. An OPTN member procuring an organ shall assure that laboratory tests and clinical examinations of potential organ donors are performed to determine any contraindications for donor acceptance, in accordance with policies established by the OPTN.
(1) Organs from individuals infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) may be transplanted only into individuals who -
(i) Are infected with HIV before receiving such organ(s); and
(A) Are participating in clinical research approved by an institutional review board, as defined in 45 CFR part 46, under the research criteria published by the Secretary under subsection (a) of section 377E of the Public Health Service Act, as amended; or
(B) The Secretary has published, through appropriate procedures, a determination under section 377E(c) of the Public Health Service Act, as amended, that participation in such clinical research, as a requirement for transplants of organs from individuals infected with HIV, is no longer warranted.
(2) Except as provided in paragraph (b)(3) of this section, the OPTN shall adopt and use standards of quality with respect to organs from individuals infected with HIV to the extent the Secretary determines necessary to allow the conduct of research in accordance with the criteria described in paragraph (b)(1)(ii)(A) of this section.
(3) If the Secretary has determined under paragraph (b)(1)(ii)(B) of this section that participation in clinical research is no longer warranted as a requirement for transplants of organs from individuals infected with HIV, the OPTN shall adopt and use standards of quality with respect to organs from individuals infected with HIV as directed by the Secretary, consistent with 42 U.S.C. 274, and in a way that ensures the changes will not reduce the safety of organ transplantation.
(c) Acceptance criteria. Transplant programs shall establish criteria for organ acceptance, and shall provide such criteria to the OPTN and the OPOs with which they are affiliated.
(a) List of potential transplant recipients.
(1) An OPTN member procuring an organ shall operate the OPTN computer match program within such time as the OPTN may prescribe to identify and rank potential recipients for each cadaveric organ procured.
(2) The rank order of potential recipients shall be determined for each cadaveric organ using the organ specific allocation criteria established in accordance with § 121.8.
(3) When a donor or donor organ does not meet a transplant program's donor acceptance criteria, as established under § 121.6(c), transplant candidates of that program shall not be ranked among potential recipients of that organ and shall not appear on a roster of potential recipients of that organ.
(b) Offer of organ for potential recipients.
(2) Organs may be offered only to potential recipients listed with transplant programs having designated transplant programs of the same type as the organ procured.
(3) An organ offer is made when all information necessary to determine whether to transplant the organ into the potential recipient has been given to the transplant hospital.
(4) A transplant program shall either accept or refuse the offered organ for the designated potential recipient within such time as the OPTN may prescribe. A transplant program shall document and provide to the OPO and to the OPTN the reasons for refusal and shall maintain this document for one year.
(c) Transportation of organ to potential recipient -
(1) Transportation. The OPTN member that procures a donated organ shall arrange for transportation of the organ to the transplant hospital.
(2) Documentation. The OPTN member that is transporting an organ shall assure that it is accompanied by written documentation of activities conducted to determine the suitability of the organ donor and shall maintain this document for one year.
(3) Packaging. The OPTN member that is transporting an organ shall assure that it is packaged in a manner that is designed to maintain the viability of the organ.
(d) Receipt of an organ. Upon receipt of an organ, the transplant hospital responsible for the potential recipient's care shall determine whether to proceed with the transplant. In the event that an organ is not transplanted into the potential recipient, the OPO which has a written agreement with the transplant hospital must offer the organ for another potential recipient in accordance with paragraph (b)(2) of this section.
(e) Blood vessels considered part of an organ. A blood vessel that is considered part of an organ under this part shall be subject to the allocation requirements and policies pertaining to the organ with which the blood vessel is procured until and unless the transplant center receiving the organ determines that the blood vessel is not needed for the transplantation of that organ.
(f) Wastage. Nothing in this section shall prohibit a transplant program from transplanting an organ into any medically suitable candidate if to do otherwise would result in the organ not being used for transplantation. The transplant program shall notify the OPTN and the OPO which made the organ offer of the circumstances justifying each such action within such time as the OPTN may prescribe.
(a) Policy development. The Board of Directors established under § 121.3 shall develop, in accordance with the policy development process described in § 121.4, policies for the equitable allocation of cadaveric organs among potential recipients. Such allocation policies:
(1) Shall be based on sound medical judgment;
(2) Shall seek to achieve the best use of donated organs;
(4) Shall be specific for each organ type or combination of organ types to be transplanted into a transplant candidate;
(5) Shall be designed to avoid wasting organs, to avoid futile transplants, to promote patient access to transplantation, and to promote the efficient management of organ placement;
(6) Shall be reviewed periodically and revised as appropriate;
(7) Shall include appropriate procedures to promote and review compliance including, to the extent appropriate, prospective and retrospective reviews of each transplant program's application of the policies to patients listed or proposed to be listed at the program; and
(8) Shall not be based on the candidate's place of residence or place of listing, except to the extent required by paragraphs (a)(1)-(5) of this section.
(b) Allocation performance goals. Allocation policies shall be designed to achieve equitable allocation of organs among patients consistent with paragraph (a) of this section through the following performance goals:
(1) Standardizing the criteria for determining suitable transplant candidates through the use of minimum criteria (expressed, to the extent possible, through objective and measurable medical criteria) for adding individuals to, and removing candidates from, organ transplant waiting lists;
(2) Setting priority rankings expressed, to the extent possible, through objective and measurable medical criteria, for patients or categories of patients who are medically suitable candidates for transplantation to receive transplants. These rankings shall be ordered from most to least medically urgent (taking into account, in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, and in particular in accordance with sound medical judgment, that life sustaining technology allows alternative approaches to setting priority ranking for patients). There shall be a sufficient number of categories (if categories are used) to avoid grouping together patients with substantially different medical urgency;
(3) Distributing organs over as broad a geographic area as feasible under paragraphs (a)(1)-(5) of this section, and in order of decreasing medical urgency; and
(4) Applying appropriate performance indicators to assess transplant program performance under paragraphs (c)(2)(i) and (c)(2)(ii) of this section and reducing the inter-transplant program variance to as small as can reasonably be achieved in any performance indicator under paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section as the Board determines appropriate, and under paragraph (c)(2)(iv) of this section. If the performance indicator “waiting time in status” is used for allocation purposes, the OPTN shall seek to reduce the inter-transplant program variance in this indicator, as well as in other selected performance indicators, to as small as can reasonably be achieved, unless to do so would result in transplanting less medically urgent patients or less medically urgent patients within a category of patients.
(c) Allocation performance indicators.
(1) Each organ-specific allocation policy shall include performance indicators. These indicators must measure how well each policy is:
(i) Achieving the performance goals set out in paragraph (b) of this section; and
(ii) Giving patients, their families, their physicians, and others timely and accurate information to assess the performance of transplant programs.
(2) Performance indicators shall include:
(i) Baseline data on how closely the results of current allocation policies approach the performance goals established under paragraph (b) of this section;
(ii) With respect to any proposed change, the amount of projected improvement in approaching the performance goals established under paragraph (b) of this section;
(iii) Such other indicators as the Board may propose and the Secretary approves; and
(iv) Such other indicators as the Secretary may require.
(3) For each organ-specific allocation policy, the OPTN shall provide to the Secretary data to assist the Secretary in assessing organ procurement and allocation, access to transplantation, the effect of allocation policies on programs performing different volumes of transplants, and the performance of OPOs and the OPTN contractor. Such data shall be required on performance by organ and status category, including program-specific data, OPO-specific data, data by program size, and data aggregated by organ procurement area, OPTN region, the Nation as a whole, and such other geographic areas as the Secretary may designate. Such data shall include the following measures of inter-transplant program variation: risk-adjusted total life-years pre-and post-transplant, risk-adjusted patient and graft survival rates following transplantation, risk-adjusted waiting time and risk-adjusted transplantation rates, as well as data regarding patients whose status or medical urgency was misclassified and patients who were inappropriately kept off a waiting list or retained on a waiting list. Such data shall cover such intervals of time, and be presented using confidence intervals or other measures of variance, as may be required to avoid spurious results or erroneous interpretation due to small numbers of patients covered.
(d) Transition patient protections -
(1) General. When the OPTN revises organ allocation policies under this section, it shall consider whether to adopt transition procedures that would treat people on the waiting list and awaiting transplantation prior to the adoption or effective date of the revised policies no less favorably than they would have been treated under the previous policies. The transition procedures shall be transmitted to the Secretary for review together with the revised allocation policies.
(2) Special rule for initial revision of liver allocation policies. When the OPTN transmits to the Secretary its initial revision of the liver allocation policies, as directed by paragraph (e)(1) of this section, it shall include transition procedures that, to the extent feasible, treat each individual on the waiting list and awaiting transplantation on October 20, 1999 no less favorably than he or she would have been treated had the revised liver allocation policies not become effective. These transition procedures may be limited in duration or applied only to individuals with greater than average medical urgency if this would significantly improve administration of the list or if such limitations would be applied only after accommodating a substantial preponderance of those disadvantaged by the change in the policies.
(e) Deadlines for initial reviews.
(1) The OPTN shall conduct an initial review of existing allocation policies and, except as provided in paragraph (e)(2) of this section, no later than November 16, 2000 shall transmit initial revised policies to meet the requirements of paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section, together with supporting documentation to the Secretary for review in accordance with § 121.4.
(2) No later than March 16, 2000 the OPTN shall transmit revised policies and supporting documentation for liver allocation to meet the requirements of paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section to the Secretary for review in accordance with § 121.4. The OPTN may transmit these materials without seeking further public comment under § 121.4(b).
(f) Secretarial review of policies, performance indicators, and transition patient protections. The OPTN's transmittal to the Secretary of proposed allocation policies and performance indicators shall include such supporting material, including the results of model-based computer simulations, as the Secretary may require to assess the likely effects of policy changes and as are necessary to demonstrate that the proposed policies comply with the performance indicators and transition procedures of paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section.
(g) Variances. The OPTN may develop, in accordance with § 121.4, experimental policies that test methods of improving allocation. All such experimental policies shall be accompanied by a research design and include data collection and analysis plans. Such variances shall be time limited. Entities or individuals objecting to variances may appeal to the Secretary under the procedures of § 121.4.
(h) Directed donation. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the allocation of an organ to a recipient named by those authorized to make the donation.
(a) To receive organs for transplantation, a transplant program in a hospital that is a member of the OPTN shall abide by these rules and shall:
(1) Be a transplant program approved by the Secretary for reimbursement under Medicare; or
(2) Be an organ transplant program which has adequate resources to provide transplant services to its patients and agrees promptly to notify the OPTN and patients awaiting transplants if it becomes inactive and which:
(i) Has letters of agreement or contracts with an OPO;
(ii) Has on site a transplant surgeon qualified in accordance with policies developed under § 121.4;
(iii) Has on site a transplant physician qualified in accordance with policies developed under § 121.4;
(iv) Has available operating and recovery room resources, intensive care resources and surgical beds and transplant program personnel;
(v) Shows evidence of collaborative involvement with experts in the fields of radiology, infectious disease, pathology, immunology, anesthesiology, physical therapy and rehabilitation medicine, histocompatibility, and immunogenetics and, as appropriate, hepatology, pediatrics, nephrology with dialysis capability, and pulmonary medicine with respiratory therapy support;
(vi) Has immediate access to microbiology, clinical chemistry, histocompatibility testing, radiology, and blood banking services, as well as the capacity to monitor treatment with immunosuppressive drugs; and
(vii) Makes available psychiatric and social support services for transplant candidates, transplant recipients, and their families; or
(3) Be a transplant program in a Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense, or other Federal hospital.
(b) To apply to be a designated transplant program, transplant programs shall provide to the OPTN such documents as the OPTN may require which show that they meet the requirements of § 121.9(a) (1), (2), or (3).
(c) The OPTN shall, within 90 days, accept or reject applications to be a designated transplant program.
(d) Applicants rejected for designation may appeal to the Secretary. Appeals shall be submitted in writing within 30 days of rejection of the application. The Secretary may:
(1) Deny the appeal; or
(2) Direct the OPTN to take action consistent with the Secretary's response to the appeal.
(a) Review and evaluation by the Secretary. The Secretary or her/his designee may perform any reviews and evaluations of member OPOs and transplant programs which the Secretary deems necessary to carry out her/his responsibilities under the Public Health Service Act and the Social Security Act.
(b) Review and evaluation by the OPTN.
(1) The OPTN shall design appropriate plans and procedures, including survey instruments, a peer review process, and data systems, for purposes of:
(i) Reviewing applications submitted under § 121.3(c) for membership in the OPTN;
(ii) Reviewing applications submitted under § 121.9(b) to be a designated transplant program; and
(iii) Conducting ongoing and periodic reviews and evaluations of each member OPO and transplant hospital for compliance with these rules and OPTN policies.
(2) Upon the approval of the Secretary, the OPTN shall furnish review plans and procedures, including survey instruments and a description of data systems, to each member OPO and transplant hospital. The OPTN shall furnish any revisions of these documents to member OPOs and hospitals, after approval by the Secretary, prior to their implementation.
(3) At the request of the Secretary, the OPTN shall conduct special reviews of OPOs and transplant programs, where the Secretary has reason to believe that such entities may not be in compliance with these rules or OPTN policies or may be acting in a manner which poses a risk to the health of patients or to public safety. The OPTN shall conduct these reviews in accordance with such schedules as the Secretary specifies and shall make periodic reports to the Secretary of progress on such reviews and on other reviews conducted under the requirements of this paragraph.
(4) The OPTN shall notify the Secretary in a manner prescribed by the Secretary within 3 days of all committee and Board of Directors meetings in which transplant hospital and OPO compliance with these regulations or OPTN policies is considered.
(c) Enforcement of OPTN rules -
(1) OPTN recommendations. The Board of Directors shall advise the Secretary of the results of any reviews and evaluations conducted under paragraph (b)(1)(iii) or paragraph (b)(3) of this section which, in the opinion of the Board, indicate noncompliance with these rules or OPTN policies, or indicate a risk to the health of patients or to the public safety, and shall provide any recommendations for appropriate action by the Secretary. Appropriate action may include removal of designation as a transplant program under § 121.9, termination of a transplant hospital's participation in Medicare or Medicaid, termination of a transplant hospital's reimbursement under Medicare and Medicaid, termination of an OPO's reimbursement under Medicare and Medicaid, if the noncompliance is with a policy designated by the Secretary as covered by section 1138 of the Social Security Act, or such other compliance or enforcement measures contained in policies developed under § 121.4.
(2) Secretary's action on recommendations. Upon the Secretary's review of the Board of Directors' recommendations, the Secretary may:
(i) Request further information from the Board of Directors or the alleged violator, or both;
(ii) Decline to accept the recommendation;
(iii) Accept the recommendation, and notify the alleged violator of the Secretary's decision; or
(iv) Take such other action as the Secretary deems necessary.
(a) Record maintenance. Records shall be maintained and made available subject to OPTN policies and applicable limitations based on personal privacy as follows:
(1) The OPTN and the Scientific Registry, as appropriate, shall:
(i) Maintain and operate an automated system for managing information about transplant candidates, transplant recipients, and organ donors, including a computerized list of individuals waiting for transplants;
(ii) Maintain records of all transplant candidates, all organ donors and all transplant recipients;
(iii) Operate, maintain, receive, publish, and transmit such records and information electronically, to the extent feasible, except when hard copy is requested; and
(iv) In making information available, provide manuals, forms, flow charts, operating instructions, or other explanatory materials as necessary to understand, interpret, and use the information accurately and efficiently.
(2) Organ procurement organizations and transplant programs -
(i) Maintenance of records. All OPOs and transplant programs shall maintain such records pertaining to each potential donor identified, each organ retrieved, each recipient transplanted and such other transplantation-related matters as the Secretary deems necessary to carry out her/his responsibilities under the Act. The OPO or transplant program shall maintain these records for seven years.
(ii) Access to facilities and records. OPOs and transplant hospitals shall permit the Secretary and the Comptroller General, or their designees, to inspect facilities and records pertaining to any aspect of services performed related to organ donation and transplantation.
(b) Reporting requirements.
(1) The OPTN and the Scientific Registry, as appropriate, shall:
(i) In addition to special reports which the Secretary may require, submit to the Secretary a report not less than once every fiscal year on a schedule prescribed by the Secretary. The report shall include the following information in a form prescribed by the Secretary:
(A) Information that the Secretary prescribes as necessary to assess the effectiveness of the Nation's organ donation, procurement and transplantation system;
(B) Information that the Secretary deems necessary for the report to Congress required by Section 376 of the Act; and,
(C) Any other information that the Secretary prescribes.
(ii) Provide to the Scientific Registry data on transplant candidates and recipients, and other information that the Secretary deems appropriate. The information shall be provided in the form and on the schedule prescribed by the Secretary;
(iii) Provide to the Secretary any data that the Secretary requests;
(iv) Make available to the public timely and accurate program-specific information on the performance of transplant programs. This shall include free dissemination over the Internet, and shall be presented, explained, and organized as necessary to understand, interpret, and use the information accurately and efficiently. These data shall be updated no less frequently than every six months (or such longer period as the Secretary determines would provide more useful information to patients, their families, and their physicians), and shall include risk-adjusted probabilities of receiving a transplant or dying while awaiting a transplant, risk-adjusted graft and patient survival following the transplant, and risk-adjusted overall survival following listing for such intervals as the Secretary shall prescribe. These data shall include confidence intervals or other measures that provide information on the extent to which chance may influence transplant program-specific results. Such data shall also include such other cost or performance information as the Secretary may specify, including but not limited to transplant program-specific information on waiting time within medical status, organ wastage, and refusal of organ offers. These data shall also be presented no more than six months later than the period to which they apply;
(v) Respond to reasonable requests from the public for data needed for bona fide research or analysis purposes, to the extent that the OPTN's or Scientific Registry's resources permit, or as directed by the Secretary. The OPTN or the Scientific Registry may impose reasonable charges for the separable costs of responding to such requests. Patient-identified data may be made available to bona fide researchers upon a showing that the research design requires such data for matching or other purposes, and that appropriate confidentiality protections, including destruction of patient identifiers upon completion of matching, will be followed. All requests shall be processed expeditiously, with data normally made available within 30 days from the date of request;
(vi) Respond to reasonable requests from the public for data needed to assess the performance of the OPTN or Scientific Registry, to assess individual transplant programs, or for other purposes. The OPTN or Scientific Registry may impose charges for the separable costs of responding to such requests. An estimate of such charges shall be provided to the requester before processing the request. All requests should be processed expeditiously, with data normally made available within 30 days from the date of request; and
(vii) Provide data to an OPTN member, without charge, that has been assembled, stored, or transformed from data originally supplied by that member.
(2) An organ procurement organization or transplant hospital shall, as specified from time to time by the Secretary, submit to the OPTN, to the Scientific Registry, as appropriate, and to the Secretary information regarding transplantation candidates, transplant recipients, donors of organs, transplant program costs and performance, and other information that the Secretary deems appropriate. Such information shall be in the form required and shall be submitted in accordance with the schedule prescribed. No restrictions on subsequent redisclosure may be imposed by any organ procurement organization or transplant hospital.
(c) Public access to data. The Secretary may release to the public information collected under this section when the Secretary determines that the public interest will be served by such release. The information which may be released includes, but is not limited to, information on the comparative costs and patient outcomes at each transplant program affiliated with the OPTN, transplant program personnel, information regarding instances in which transplant programs refuse offers of organs to their patients, information regarding characteristics of individual transplant programs, information regarding waiting time at individual transplant programs, and such other data as the Secretary determines will provide information to patients, their families, and their physicians that will assist them in making decisions regarding transplantation.
The Secretary will establish, consistent with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Advisory Committee on Organ Transplantation. The Secretary may seek the comments of the Advisory Committee on proposed OPTN policies and such other matters as the Secretary determines.
[64 FR 56661, Oct. 20, 1999]
Human organ, as covered by section 301 of the National Organ Transplant Act of 1984, as amended, means the human (including fetal) kidney, liver, heart, lung, pancreas, bone marrow, cornea, eye, bone, skin, intestine (including the esophagus, stomach, small and/or large intestine, or any portion of the gastrointestinal tract) or any vascularized composite allograft defined in § 121.2. It also means any subpart thereof, including that derived from a fetus.
[78 FR 40042, July 3, 2013]
(a) The following incidental non-medical expenses incurred by donating individuals toward making living donations of their organs may be reimbursed:
(1) Lost wages;
(2) Child-care expenses; and
(3) Elder-care expenses.
[85 FR 59444, Sept. 22, 2020]