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Freeman Hospital to train doctors all over the world

Leading heart and lung surgeons at the Freeman Hospital will be showcasing their life-saving transplant techniques next week, when they host their first International Teaching Course for Heart and Lung (Cardiopulmonary) Transplantation.

Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital – an internationally-renowned Centre of Excellence for all forms of organ transplant surgery – will welcome over 20 Surgeons from around the world when they attend the course at the Newcastle’s Surgical Training Centre on 2 and 3 September 2014. Some are travelling from as far afield as Brazil and India to meet our transplant experts.

It aims to teach complex techniques in the field of Cardiopulmonary Transplantation and the use of Ventricular Assisted Devices or VADs which are used to keep people alive while they wait for a heart transplant. This unique course gives delegates the chance to witness complex procedures first-hand, and carry out some transplantation procedures themselves using cutting edge simulation techniques.

Prof Stephen Clark, Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon and Co-Course Chairman, explains: “We are delighted to be holding our first International Heart and Lung Transplant Course here in Newcastle. The course has attracted clinicians from all over the world which confirms the international reputation we enjoy in this field.

“The programme we offer has garnered a great deal of interest because it offers the best of both worlds for Surgeons. The opportunity to observe the latest techniques carried out by leaders at the cutting edge of Cardiopulmonary Transplantation, and then to gain practical experience with one to one guidance and direction. This includes Cardiac and Lung Transplantation, implantation of VADs, ex vivo lung perfusion (reconditioning of donor lungs) and ECMO (a treatment that uses a pump to circulate blood through an artificial lung back into the bloodstream).

“This is our first course of this calibre and we hope to continue to invite our international colleagues annually.”

Sir Leonard Fenwick, Chief Executive for the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals says: “We are extremely proud to hold this trailblazing course – the first of its kind in the UK – which offers a superb opportunity to showcase our transplantation expertise to colleagues on an international level. This course follows on from our balloon release celebrations at the Freeman Hospital on Monday, to acknowledge the major milestone of performing over 100 adult congenital heart transplants here in Newcastle. No other centre in the UK has the same expertise in this challenging field of transplantation which means we essentially provide a national service for these patients.”


Interview and photo opportunities will be available during Monday’s celebrations with a member of the Transplantation Course Team, as well as Derek Airey, ex-lung transplant patient and Chairman of the Freeman Hospital Lung Transplant Association. Please ask Lynn Holt, Heart and Lung Transplant Co-ordinator on the day for introductions.

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