For Vanessa Humphreville, MD, FACS, director of Living Kidney Donation and assistant professor in the Division of Transplant Surgery, mitigating the barriers for living donors in Minnesota is critical to saving lives through organ transplantation.

For the past four years, Dr. Humphreville and her partners at the National Kidney Foundation have been advocating in Minnesota to get legislation pushed through to protect living donors from discrimination by insurers. 

"For years, we have been trying to remove disincentives to living organ donation from reimbursing for lost wages, and travel expenses for donation to ensuring FMLA covers time off work for living donation," said Dr. Humphreville. "One thing we have not been able to do until now was to make sure insurance companies (disability and life) could not discriminate against living donors in the form of denial of coverage or higher premiums."

On Monday, June 13, Dr. Humphreville and colleagues attended the ceremonial session with Governor Walz as he signed the bipartisan bill into law. The bill prohibits life, long-term care, and disability insurance carriers from declining or limiting coverage because a person is an organ or bone marrow donor. It also prohibits discriminating in the premium rating, offering, issuance, cancellation, amount of coverage, or any other condition based solely on donor status. The bill will take effect on August 1, 2022. 

"We are so excited for our living donors!" said Dr. Humphreville. "We will continue to be a voice for our selfless living donors."