The rules of the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) decide how policy is developed, how organs are allocated, and how transplant data is collected. The public helps by submitting comments about the process.
The OPTN committees and board of directors develop the rules. The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) currently holds the federal contract to operate the OPTN and it coordinates committee and board actions.
Note: OPTN’s rules must be approved by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) to become federal regulations. The current OPTN rules have not been approved, so they are voluntary. However, the requirements in the OPTN Final Rule are mandatory and enforceable by HHS.
Due to scientific and technological advances in organ transplantation, OPTN’s allocation policies are always being updated. This makes sure patients benefit from the best possible solutions.