Media Advisory

For Immediate Release:

January 15, 2020

Media Contact:

Tania Leets

tania.leets@jhsmiami.org

786-546-2581

305-585-4081

Miami Transplant Institute at Jackson Memorial Hospital Sets National Record, Performing More Transplants in 2019 than any other U.S. Hospital

Record-breaking 747 Transplants Performed in 2019 at Jackson Memorial Hospital

Who:

Carlos A. Migoya, president and CEO, Jackson Health System; Luke Preczewski, vice president, Miami Transplant Institute; Rodrigo Vianna, MD, director, Miami Transplant Institute and chief of liver, intestinal, and multivisceral transplant; Giselle Guerra, MD, medical director, Miami Transplant Institute and medical director of kidney transplantation; Camila Correa, patient; Emilia Correa, patient’s mother; Kenier Correa, patient’s father.

What:

The Miami Transplant Institute, an affiliation between Jackson Health System and UHealth – University of Miami Health System, has claimed the nation’s top position, performing more organ transplants in 2019 than any other hospital, according to data released this week by the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network/United Network for Organ Sharing (OPTN/UNOS). This distinction marks the first time MTI is named number one as the largest transplant center in the United States.

MTI performed 747 transplants in 2019 – the most of any U.S. hospital. It also surpassed the record for most transplants performed in a year by any U.S. center since the OPTN started keeping records.

“This new distinction comes as MTI enters its 50th year of partnership between Jackson and UM,” said Carlos A. Migoya, president and CEO of Jackson Health System. “These two institutions have built MTI into an internationally revered team of doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals with an unmatched commitment to serving every patient while advancing the global science of transplant”

Patients benefit by gaining access to the newest, most advanced, most effective treatments and procedures powered by research done by UHealth, and grounded by the award-winning care provided at Jackson Memorial Hospital, one of the largest public teaching hospitals in the country.

MTI’s individual organ programs led in multiple areas including:

  • The kidney program continues to be the largest in the country with 502 transplantations done, breaking Jackson’s previous national record set in 2018 as the largest volume performed by a U.S. transplant program since the OPTN started keeping records.
  • The intestine, liver, pancreas and combined kidney/pancreas programs each ranked among the top ten.

The excellence of care provided to patients is made possible by a multidisciplinary team of surgeons, physicians, nurses, social workers, dietitians, pharmacists, operating room, intensive care unit, inpatient, and other staff.

“Our amazing multidisciplinary team is motivated not by the number of transplants we do but by each individual story: a father restored to health to walk his daughter down the aisle, a child able to leave the hospital and return to a normal childhood, a wife and mother healthy enough to celebrate holidays with family again,” said Luke Preczewski,  Jackson’s vice president for transplant. “The miracle of transplantation, possible only thanks to the profound generosity of organ donors and their families, is every one of these stories.”

MTI is now the largest and most comprehensive transplant programs in the United States for both adults and children, with patients traveling from across the globe seeking the expertise of one of the world’s leading transplant centers.

“This is an amazing achievement which requires a tremendous effort and tireless dedication from all our faculty members and staff,” said UHealth transplant surgeon Rodrigo Vianna, MD, director, Miami Transplant Institute and chief of liver, intestinal, and multivisceral transplant. “It reflects the great benefits of the partnership between UM and Jackson, but above all, it brings a new chance in life for hundreds of recipients and it is a great gesture of solidarity by hundreds of donor families and living donors.”

One organ donor can save eight lives – and it is because of these donors and their families that the MTI team is able to perform this lifesaving work for patients such as nine-year-old Camila Correa.

The Patient Story:

Soon after birth in October 2010, Camila Correa was diagnosed with a life-threatening disease of the liver and bile ducts called biliary atresia. Since then, she has spent most of her life in and out of hospitals in her hometown of Tampa and in Miami, where she has been a patient of the Miami Transplant Institute.

Her first life-saving liver transplant was in 2011 at Holtz Children’s Hospital at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center. One-year-old Camila weighed just six pounds.

But soon after the surgery, Camila’s body developed a blood clot and rejected the new organ, and once again needed to be placed on the waiting list. Just five days later, her family’s prayers were answered and another liver was available for transplant.

That surgery was a success, but Camila later faced additional medical challenges that contributed to her health continuing to deteriorate.

By the fall of 2018, doctors determined she would need a third liver transplant. In February 2019, Camila’s family received the call that a donor was available.

But the surgery was far from routine. The medical team led by Dr. Vianna and a multidisciplinary team, discovered a serious complication: Camila’s organs had become connected like spaghetti, and they could not continue the operation as planned.

Doctors determined she did not need a liver transplant – she needed a multivisceral, or multi-organ transplant of a new liver, stomach, pancreas, and intestines. The operation would not take place until October 25.

The operation was a success, but Camila faced several medical setbacks as she recovered. Her family remained by her side in the pediatric intensive care unit.

On Christmas Eve 2019, after 46 days in intensive care, Camila was discharged from the hospital. Every day she continues to get stronger.

“Miracles do exist,” said Emilia. “We would like to express our sympathy to the families of organ donors, who are the real heroes.”

When:

10 to 11 a.m., Thursday, January 16

Where:

Jackson Memorial Hospital
Ira Clark Diagnostic Treatment Center, room 259
1080 N.W. 19th Street
Miami, FL 33136

Editor's Note:

  • Media can park in front of DTC on the curb
  • Spanish speakers: Carlos Migoya, Dr. Guerra, and patient’s family
  • Dropbox link for images of family: http://bit.ly/2QfhCYW

Jackson Health System

1611 N.W. 12th Avenue Miami, FL 33136