By Makenzie O’Keefe
DENVER (CBS4) – A bill designed to make it easier to donate organs like kidneys will be signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper on Wednesday. It’s called the Living Organ Donor Support Act.
There are over 1,000 people on the waiting list for an organ transplant in Colorado. Many need a new kidney or liver to survive.
Dave Repsher was a big advocate for this legislation. Repsher was burned over 90 percent of his body in a Flight for Life crash in Frisco in July 2015. After a year of medical hardships, the antibiotics that saved him also damaged his kidneys, leaving him on dialysis five days a week. That was until a man named Matt Martinez stepped forward and made a life changing kidney donation.
This legislation will make Colorado one of the first states to offer paid leave, for up to 10 days, for living organ donors by providing a tax break for employers.
Before this bill, studies show that a living donor lost almost $2,000 because they missed work for recovery time after making this sacrifice for others.
This bill won’t be in effect until 2020, but the hope is this will allow more people to step up and help to save a life.