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    Halpern SD, Goldberg D. Allocating organs to cognitively impaired patients. N Engl J Med 2017; 376:299301.

Cognitive Impairment and Transplantation Policy

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How should patients’ cognitive function be weighed when allocating organs? A perspective recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) (1) shed some light on the issue. State and federal officials are also weighing in, and new laws are under consideration to keep the scarce organ supply open to a wider population and diversity of patients.

To date, four states, California, New Jersey, Maryland, and Massachusetts, have passed laws with provisions to protect citizens who may face discrimination when in need of an organ transplant or anatomical gift. Four other states have introduced bills: