By Charissa Luci-Atienza
MAGDALO partylist Rep. Gary Alejano has proposed that employees who voluntarily offer organ, bone marrow, blood or blood platelets be entitled to an organ donation leave with pay.
Alejano filed House Bill 7087, or the proposed Organ Donation Leave Act of 2018, which grants time off with pay for donor employees.
Citing the World Health Organization (WHO), Alejano said human material for transplantation is mostly obtained from a deceased donor.
“Yet, despite the frequent use of materials donated from deceased donors, the donation of organs from living donors is necessary for some types of transplants to compensate for the limited supply of material available from deceased donors in order to meet patient needs. Living donation is thus practiced despite the fact that it involves risks for the donor that may not be negligible, ” he said.
“This bill seeks to acknowledge the donor employees who willingly offer organ, bone marrow, blood or blood platelets by entitling them to an organ donation leave with pay, ” Alejano said.
House Bill 7087 provides that an employee may use up to 30 days of organ donation leave in any 12-month period to serve as a bone marrow donor and to serve as an organ donor.
While, an employee may use up to one hour to donate blood every 56 days and up to two hours to donate blood platelets in accordance with appropriate medical standards established by the Philippine National Red Cross Philippine Blood Coordinating Council, blood collection units, and blood banks or centers in the country.
“Leave may not be granted more than 24 times in a 12-month period,” the bill said.
Under the bill, organ donation leave may be used only after obtaining approval from the employee’s agency.
HB 7087 provides that an employee may not be required to use accumulated sick or vacation leave time before being eligible for organ donor leave.
The measure tasks the Department of Health (DOH) to establish conditions and procedures for requesting and approving leave, and require medical documentation of the proposed organ or bone marrow donation before the leave is approved by the employing agency. (Charissa M. Luci-Atienza)