2009 Texas Code
HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE
TITLE 8. DEATH AND DISPOSITION OF THE BODY
CHAPTER 693. REMOVAL OF BODY PARTS, BODY TISSUE, AND CORNEAL TISSUE  

HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE

TITLE 8. DEATH AND DISPOSITION OF THE BODY

SUBTITLE B. DISPOSITION OF THE BODY

CHAPTER 693. REMOVAL OF BODY PARTS, BODY TISSUE, AND CORNEAL

TISSUE

SUBCHAPTER A. REMOVAL OF BODY PARTS OR TISSUE

Sec. 693.001. DEFINITION. In this subchapter, "visceral organ"

means the heart, kidney, liver, or other organ or tissue that

requires a patient support system to maintain the viability of

the organ or tissue.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Sec. 693.002. REMOVAL OF BODY PART OR TISSUE FROM DECEDENT WHO

DIED UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES REQUIRING AN INQUEST. (a)(1) On a

request from an organ procurement organization, as defined by

Section 692A.002, the medical examiner, justice of the peace,

county judge, or physician designated by the justice of the peace

or county judge may permit the removal of organs from a decedent

who died under circumstances requiring an inquest by the medical

examiner, justice of the peace, or county judge if consent is

obtained pursuant to Sections 692A.005 through 692A.010 or

Section 693.003.

(2) If no autopsy is required, the organs to be transplanted

shall be released in a timely manner to the organ procurement

organization, as defined by Section 692A.002, for removal and

transplantation.

(3) If an autopsy is required and the medical examiner, justice

of the peace, county judge, or designated physician determines

that the removal of the organs will not interfere with the

subsequent course of an investigation or autopsy, the organs

shall be released in a timely manner for removal and

transplantation. The autopsy will be performed in a timely manner

following the removal of the organs.

(4) If the medical examiner is considering withholding one or

more organs of a potential donor for any reason, the medical

examiner shall be present during the removal of the organs. In

such case, the medical examiner may request a biopsy of those

organs or deny removal of the anatomical gift. If the medical

examiner denies removal of the anatomical gift, the medical

examiner shall explain in writing the reasons for the denial.

The medical examiner shall provide the explanation to:

(A) the organ procurement organization; and

(B) any person listed in Section 692A.009 who consented to the

removal.

(5) If the autopsy is not being performed by a medical examiner

and one or more organs may be withheld, the justice of the peace,

county judge, or designated physician shall be present during the

removal of the organs and may request the biopsy or deny removal

of the anatomical gift. If removal of the anatomical gift is

denied, the justice of the peace, county judge, or physician

shall provide the written explanation required by Subdivisions

(4)(A) and (B).

(6) If, in performing the duties required by this subsection,

the medical examiner or, in those cases in which an autopsy is

not performed by a medical examiner, the justice of the peace,

county judge, or designated physician is required to be present

at the hospital to examine the decedent prior to removal of the

organs or during the procedure to remove the organs, the

qualified organ procurement organization shall on request

reimburse the county or the entity designated by the county for

the actual costs incurred in performing such duties, not to

exceed $1,000. Such reimbursements shall be deposited in the

general fund of the county. The payment shall be applied to the

additional costs incurred by the office of the medical examiner,

justice of the peace, or county judge in performing such duties,

including the cost of providing coverage beyond regular business

hours. The payment shall be used to facilitate the timely

procurement of organs in a manner consistent with the

preservation of the organs for the purposes of transplantation.

(7) At the request of the medical examiner or, in those cases in

which an autopsy is not performed by a medical examiner, the

justice of the peace, county judge, or designated physician, the

health care professional removing organs from a decedent who died

under circumstances requiring an inquest shall file with the

medical examiner, justice of the peace, or county judge a report

detailing the condition of the organs removed and their

relationship, if any, to the cause of death.

(b) On a request from a tissue bank, as defined by Section

692A.002, the medical examiner may permit the removal of tissue

believed to be clinically usable for transplants or other therapy

or treatment from a decedent who died under circumstances

requiring an inquest if consent is obtained pursuant to Sections

692A.005 through 692A.010 or Section 693.003 or, if consent is

not required by those sections, no objection by a person listed

in Section 692A.009 is known by the medical examiner. If the

medical examiner denies removal of the tissue, the medical

examiner shall explain in writing the reasons for the denial.

The medical examiner shall provide the explanation to:

(1) the tissue bank; and

(2) the person listed in Section 692A.009 who consented to the

removal.

(c) If the autopsy is not being performed by a medical examiner,

the justice of the peace, county judge, or designated physician

may permit the removal of tissue in the same manner as a medical

examiner under Subsection (b). If removal of the anatomical gift

is denied, the justice of the peace, county judge, or physician

shall provide the written explanation required by Subsections

(b)(1) and (2).

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 523, Sec. 1, eff. June 13,

1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1220, Sec. 1, eff. July 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch.

186, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch.

186, Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 693.003. CONSENT NOT REQUIRED IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES.

If a person listed in Section 692A.009 cannot be identified and

contacted within four hours after death is pronounced and the

county court determines that no reasonable likelihood exists that

a person can be identified and contacted during the four-hour

period, the county court may permit the removal of a nonvisceral

organ or tissue.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch.

186, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 693.005. IMMUNITY FROM DAMAGES IN CIVIL ACTION. In a civil

action brought by a person listed in Section 692A.009 who did not

object before the removal of tissue or a body part specified by

Section 693.002, a medical examiner, justice of the peace, county

judge, medical facility, physician acting on permission of a

medical examiner, justice of the peace, or county judge, or

person assisting a physician is not liable for damages on a

theory of civil recovery based on a contention that the

plaintiff's consent was required before the body part or tissue

could be removed.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1220, Sec. 1, eff. July 1,

2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch.

186, Sec. 7, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 693.006. REMOVAL OF CORNEAL TISSUE. On a request from an

eye bank, as defined in Section 692A.002, the medical examiner,

justice of the peace, county judge, or physician designated by

the justice of the peace or county judge may permit the removal

of corneal tissue subject to the same provisions that apply to

removal of a visceral organ on the request of a procurement

organization under this subchapter. The provisions of Chapter

692A relating to immunity and consent apply to the removal of the

corneal tissue.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch.

1069, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch.

186, Sec. 8, eff. September 1, 2009.

SUBCHAPTER C. EYE ENUCLEATION

Sec. 693.021. DEFINITION. In this chapter, "ophthalmologist"

means a person licensed to practice medicine who specializes in

treating eye diseases.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Sec. 693.022. PERSONS WHO MAY ENUCLEATE EYE AS ANATOMICAL GIFT.

Only the following persons may enucleate an eye that is an

anatomical gift:

(1) a licensed physician;

(2) a licensed doctor of dental surgery or medical dentistry;

(3) a licensed embalmer; or

(4) a technician supervised by a physician.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Sec. 693.023. EYE ENUCLEATION COURSE. Each person, other than a

licensed physician, who performs an eye enucleation must complete

a course in eye enucleation taught by an ophthalmologist and must

possess a certificate showing that the course has been completed.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Sec. 693.024. REQUISITES OF EYE ENUCLEATION COURSE. The course

in eye enucleation prescribed by Section 693.023 must include

instruction in:

(1) the anatomy and physiology of the eye;

(2) maintaining a sterile field during the procedure;

(3) use of the appropriate instruments; and

(4) procedures for the sterile removal of the corneal button and

the preservation of it in a preservative fluid.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

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