Uganda adopts the Human Organ Donation and Transplant Bill 2022

UGANDA – The Parliament of the Republic of Uganda has passed the Uganda Human Organ Donation and Transplant Bill 2022 setting tough penalties for dealing in human organs for commercial purposes.

According to the lawmakers, the new bill seeks to establish a legal framework for organ, cell and tissue transplant in Uganda as well as to regulate the conduct of donation and transplant activities in the country.

The Parliament has approved a life sentence for persons who deal in human organs and tissue for commercial purposes in a bid to prevent vices associated with human organ donation and transplantation.

In particular, the Bill imposes a life sentence for anyone who removes a human organ, tissue, or cell from a living donor without consent or authorization; and prohibits the sale of one’s organs for financial gains.

Corporate bodies will face a penalty of Shs10 billion for being involved in human organ trade. For the same offence, individuals including health workers or traffickers face a fine of Shs2 billion or imprisonment not exceeding 20 years or both,” the Parliament outlined.

The Human Organ Donation and Transplant Bill 2022 also prescribes life imprisonment with no option to pay one’s way out for child organ traffickers in government efforts to help Ugandans get organ transplants while protecting vulnerable people.

The Bill establishes the Uganda Organ and Transplant Council to oversee and regulate organ and cell donation and transplantation in Uganda,” the legislative body announced.

Furthermore, the provisions of the law include stem cell therapy for miners who are twins or close siblings after approval by the Council and it prescribes a penalty of life imprisonment for a person who contravenes the provision.

The Committee on Health, which earlier scrutinized the Bill, listening to views from various stakeholders recommended that child organ donation only be done in exceptional circumstances approved by the Council with the consent of a parent or guardian,” the Parliament said.

In addition, the Bill prohibits monetary or any other forms of compensation for organs, tissues, or cells other than reimbursement of donation-related expenses except for justifiable expenses approved by the council.

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