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Adult Heart Transplants Approved, Lung Program Closes

While one Florida hospital has been approved for adult heart transplants, another is temporarily closing its lung-transplant program.

Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood has been approved to begin performing adult heart transplants, becoming Broward County’s first facility to perform the life-saving procedure, the Miami Herald reports.  The new adult heart transplant program will be part of the Memorial Cardiac and Vascular Institute, where surgeons from Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital have performed pediatric heart transplants since 2010. Adult transplant surgeries have been dominated for years by Jackson’s Miami Transplant Institute, the Herald reports.

Meanwhile, the only hospital in Central Florida performing lung transplants is temporarily closing its program.  According to the Orlando Sentinel, Florida Hospital officials say they don’t have enough surgeons to perform the lifesaving procedure. The closure leaves patients trying to get on other waiting lists; the nearest programs are in Tampa, Gainesville and Jacksonville.

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.