Miami systems halt adult heart transplant program

The Miami Transplant Institute has abruptly halted its adult heart transplant program until further notice, the Miami Herald reported March 23.

No new patients will be accepted and current patients are being transferred to other locations. The institute — which is jointly run by Jackson Health System, a public safety-net system based in Miami, and the University of Miami's UHealth — shut the program voluntarily and temporarily to undergo review by the United Network for Organ Sharing, the organization that operates the country's organ transplant system under contract by the federal government. UNOS manages self-reporting and peer reviews of transplant hospitals and organ procurement organizations. UNOS said it could not discuss the review of the Miami Transplant Institute.

Luke Preczewski, vice president of the institute, announced the suspension in a staff Zoom meeting on March 20, noting there would be no public announcement, according to the report. The Miami Herald heard of the suspension independently, and Jackson Health System confirmed it in an emailed statement. 

"We will reinstate the program after a thorough assessment and a clear plan to recruit additional world-class clinicians in the same way we have built globally admired transplant programs for other organs," Jackson said in the statement. "Our pediatric heart transplant program is not affected by this decision, nor is our program to provide mechanical heart devices. The quality of care and personal experience of our patients, families, donors, and clinicians are our guiding principles for this partnership between Jackson Health System and UHealth-University of Miami Health System." 

UHealth declined to comment.

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