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Law Change to Reclassify Face and Hand Transplants

The Washington Post reports that with a new federal rule change to be effective July 3rd, 2014, faces, hands, and other body parts classified as vascularized composite allografts (VCA) will fall under the National Organ Transplant Act. These body parts are called “vascularized composite allografts because they are composites of skin, tendons, fat, nerves, blood vessels, muscle and other tissue.” The federal law change will mean that face and transplant programs will have to meet the same safety standards as heart and liver programs and will be overseen by the United Network for Organ Sharing. “The Federal Register notice about the rule change cites a 2010 Department of Veterans Affairs report that estimates there to be as many as 200 wounded troops who might be eligible for face transplants.”

Read it in The Washington Post.