Reps. Van Duyne, Cleaver Lead Effort to Ensure Safe and Efficient Organ Transportation

Congresswoman Beth Van Duyne (R-TX-24) and Congressman Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO–05) led a bipartisan group of lawmakers in urging the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to take an important step toward improving the transportation of life-saving organs.

The FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024, which was signed into law on May 16, 2024, contained a provision requiring the DOT and FAA to form a working group to review the safety and efficiency of the transportation of life-saving organs.

“Over the last two decades, it’s become unnecessarily difficult to fly vital organs to patients due to bureaucratic red tape. I was glad to work with Congressman Cleaver in bringing together this bipartisan group to underscore the importance of improving the air transportation of organs and ensure these gifts of life reach their intended recipients quickly and safely,” said Congresswoman Van Duyne.

“Organ donation is one of the greatest gifts one can leave when they depart from this world—and it’s imperative that every organ provided is treated with the care and respect worthy of such a life-saving donation,” said Congressman Cleaver. “I was pleased when Congress came together to authorize a working group to develop best practices and identify hindrances to transporting donated organs in commercial aircrafts, which will help to ensure these life-saving organs are transferred quickly and carefully to patients in need, and I’m happy to join Rep. Van Duyne to urge the Department of Transportation to move swiftly in implementing this important provision from the recently signed FAA Reauthorization bill.”

"We continue to be incredibly grateful for Congresswoman Van Duyne’s commitment to our life-saving mission. Her willingness to champion common-sense solutions for the organ donation community is invaluable," said Brad Adams, President and CEO of Southwest Transplant Alliance, headquartered in Dallas.

“We must do everything in our power to protect the gift of life and help patients get the organ transplants they need,” said Maureen McBride, Ph.D., CEO of UNOS. “The efficient transportation of life-saving organs is critically important to patients and donor families to avoid unnecessary delays and complexities.  Transporting organs in the main cabin of an airplane, instead of in cargo, as is the practice today, will make a meaningful difference. Thank you, Congresswoman Van Duyne, Congressman Cleaver, and members of the donation and transplant community for supporting the swift creation of the workgroup.” 

Congresswoman Van Duyne and Congressman Cleaver are joined by Congresswoman Miller (R-WV-1), Congressman Nadler (D-NY-12), Congressman Wenstrup (R-OH-02), Congresswoman McCollum (D-MN-04), Congressman Bacon (R-NE-02), Congressman Guest (R-MS-03), Congressman Crenshaw (R-TX-02), Congressman Johnson (R-SD-AL), Congresswoman Porter (D-CA-47), Congressman Wilson (R-SC-02), Congressman Nehls (R-TX-22), Congressman Grijalva (D-AZ-07), Congressman Suozzi (D-NY-03), Congressman Garbarino (R-NY-02), Congressman Jackson (D-IL-01), Congressman Lawler (R-NY-17), Congressman Obernolte (R-CA-23), Congresswoman Davids (D-KS-03), Congressman Moolenaar (R-MI-02), Congresswoman Stansbury (D-NM-01), Congressman McCormick (R-GA-06), Congressman Duncan (R-SC-03), Congressman Mann (R-KS-01), Congressman Cardenas (D-CA-29), and Congressman Stanton (D-AZ-04). 

Click HERE to read the letter. 


  • In June 2023, Rep. Van Duyne introduced the “Saving Organs One Flight at a Time Act” which would reinstate the ability for air carriers to safely carry organs for transport above the wing. 

    • After the attacks on 9/11, the ability for organs to fly above the wings in commercial aircrafts was removed and storage was designated to the cargo hold leaving confusion, delays in transport, and in some cases destruction of precious organs. 

  • Rep. Van Duyne applauded the inclusion of this new provision in the FAA Reauthorization bill, which was passed and signed into law in May 2024.


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