Jewish Hospital to suspend heart transplant program

Louisville, Ky.-based Jewish Hospital is putting its heart transplant program on hold starting Aug. 17, according to The Courier-Journal.

 The suspension can last up to 12 months. To reopen, it will need approval from CMS and the United Network for Organ Sharing.

CMS requires heart transplant programs to perform at least 10 procedures over a 12-month period, but Jewish Hospital is far behind with just one transplant performed in 2019. The hospital's owner, KentuckyOne Health, attributed the low number to "new nationwide organ allocation policies" that have made it more difficult for Jewish Hospital to obtain donor hearts.

Jewish Hospital said it will aid heart transplant patients in transferring to another center for care. The suspension does not affect any other solid organ transplant programs or cardiovascular services at Jewish Hospital.

The program's closing could cost the hospital its designation as a level 1 trauma center, among other consequences, Insider Louisville reported earlier this month.

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