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Families Of Children Who Need Lung Transplants Await Potential Life-Or-Death Decision

By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The families of two children with end stage cystic fibrosis who are in desperate needs for lung transplants have asked the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network to set aside its “under 12” rule.

“Millie and the Murnaghan family are not seeking preferential treatment,” says Stephen Harvey, who represents the families of 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan of Newtown Square and 11-year-old Javier Acosta of New York. Both are receiving care at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Harvey says the Network will meet on Monday to consider whether to do away with its “under 12” policy, which he says discriminates against some children because of their age.

“If they were just 12 they would be entitled to be considered based on their condition. And that’s what we’re asking. Not that he be moved to the front of the line.”

Javier Acosta’s mother, Milagros Martinez, says she already lost one son, who died while awaiting a transplant.

“Our hope is that he will receive his transplant. It’s very difficult for me to say what happened to your brother- won’t happen to you.”

Earlier this week a federal judge made a temporary exception to the policy that puts the children on the adult lung transplant list for 10 days.

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