“Our program is recognized as a leader in transplantation, not only in volume and outcomes, but also in research and new program development,” says Dr. Norman Kneteman, Regional Program Clinical Director of Transplantation for Capital Health. “We attract some of the top specialists in the country, and the program is well known beyond Canada’s borders. We have American medical centres calling us when they have organs available for transplantation.”
Dr. Kneteman notes that many people throughout Capital Health contribute to the success of the program. “Our transplant program is as successful as it is because of the cooperation and support from staff and physicians in many different departments.”
- The UAH established itself as the site of Canada’s busiest heart transplant program with 41 transplants in 2000. In 2001, 42 heart transplants were performed – breaking the hospital’s previous record for most heart transplants performed in one year at any Canadian centre.
- The Capital Health region rivals Toronto as a leading centre in lung transplantation after performing 33 lung transplants last year.
- Capital Health is the largest Canadian thoracic transplant centre, with a total of 515 heart, lung and heart-lung transplants completed since the program began.
- Capital Health is the world leader in islet transplants – an emerging treatment for type I diabetes.
- Capital Health’s Comprehensive Tissue Centre is one of only two fully accredited multi-tissue banks in Canada.
- The UAH is home to Western Canada’s only pediatric liver transplant program and is leading in the development of both pediatric and adult living-donor liver transplants.
- The liver transplant team performed its 500th liver transplant in November 2001. The team has performed more than 60 transplants per year for the last three years.
- The UAH kidney transplant program is a pioneer in North America, and a leader in transplant research. The program has performed over 1,500 transplants to date, and 2001 was the second busiest year on record with 90 transplants.
Patient care at University Hospital is enhanced by a specialized 16-bed multi-organ transplant unit for adult patients who have received kidney, kidney/pancreas, pancreas, liver, islet, and lung transplants.
“Many of our post-transplant patients have the same immediate care needs, and they are all immunosuppressed, so it’s advantageous to have them on the same unit,” says Deanna Paulson, Patient Care Manager for the unit. “In addition, the resources and equipment required to care for these patients can be found on one unit instead of several.”
Capital Health is the largest integrated academic health region in Canada, providing complete health services to 860,000 people in Edmonton, St. Albert, Strathcona County, and Leduc County. The region serves a total of 1.6 million people across central and northern Alberta, providing specialized services such as trauma and burn treatment, organ transplants, and high-risk obstetrics.