CHAPTER 396

FORMERLY

SENATE BILL NO. 573

AS AMENDED BY SENATE AMENDMENTS NOS. 4 AND 6

AND HOUSE AMENDMENT NO. I

AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE MEDICAL EXAMINERS IN DELAWARE TO PROVIDE TO EYE BANKS CORNEAS FROM DECEDENTS UNDER THEIR JURISDICTION AND TO PROVIDE IMMUNITY FROM CERTAIN CIVIL ACTION ARISING THEREFROM.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend Chapter 47, Title 29, Delaware Code, by adding thereto a new section to read as follows:

"54711. Authority to Provide Corneas to Eye Banks

(a) Upon request of an authorized eye bank on behalf of a patient in need of corneal tissue for a transplant, a medical examiner is authorized to provide the cornea under the following conditions:

(1) a decedent who may provide a suitable cornea for transplant is under the jurisdiction of the medical examiner;

(2) after making bona fide good faith efforts to contact the next of kin, no objection by the next of kin is known by the medical examiner prior to the removal of the cornea by an authorized representative of an eye bank; and

(3) the cornea for transplant will not interfere with the subsequent course of an investigation or autopsy or alter the post mortem facial appearance of the decedent. '

(b) For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

'Authorized Eye Bank' includes the Eye Foundation of Delaware Valley and any other eye bank approved by the Eye Bank Association of America.

'Next of kin' means;

(1) a spouse;

(2) if no spouse, the decedent's adult children;

(3) If no spouse or adult children, the decedent's parents.

(c) The Medical examiner or an authorized eye bank, while acting in compliance with this section, shall not be liable to the next of kin of a decedent, whose corneal tissue is removed and donated pursuant to the provisions of this section, for any civil damages."

Approved July 11, 1980.