(KXNET) — North Dakota lawmakers are considering a plan that would ensure people living with disabilities would continue to receive quality health care.
Senate Bill 2302 would ensure that no one is discriminated against for an organ transplant if they live with a mental or physical disability. In some states, people living with down syndrome are considered a low priority on organ transplant lists.
The proposal in North Dakota wouldn’t penalize a hospital found to be in violation, but it could include an investigation by a state agency.
“Not that I’m aware of any cases or that there’s been abuse. But I think we’re just being proactive and making sure that our law is clear,” Sen. Terry Wanzek said. State Senator Wanzek also has a sister living with Down syndrome.
“What we knew about down syndrome isn’t the same as what we know today,” mother Annalise Duffy said. “I think in the 1980s, the life expectancy was between six to ten years old. And today, it’s 60 plus. so there’s so much that we know now that we didn’t. and I think if our doctors and decision-makers are aware of that, it becomes easier to make those decisions.”