Understand WHY and HOW long you may have to wait. Empower yourself with knowledge during this time

The current demands for organs has made the usual waiting time for a lung longer – from several weeks to several months to years. The median wait time is six months across all status.

Monthly Education Meetingsin the outpatient setting focus on pre and post transplant information. Any patients being evaluated for transplantation, patients on the waiting list, and patients who have received their heart transplant or ventricular devices plus their family members are welcome to attend.

Learn how to deal with potentially stressful situations in a positive manner.

Waiting, especially during those BAD days, when you do not feel well, can be very stressful. Fear of the unknown is normal and it is OK to be scared. The transplant team will be available to help you resource during these times.

Remember Education Meetings and Mentors are important during this time. Use this time to answer questions; which will reduce your fear of unknown.

It also is helpful for you and your support person to consider psychological counseling to deal with these stressful times. By channeling your energies and simply talking with others, your concerns can be put in better perspective and result in decreased stress and frustration.

Stress reduction tapes and books are also helpful (See Transplant Resources).

Improve your overall health by following recommended nutritional and exercise program

It is important to keep “well” as you can. Proper nutrition and exercise will help you feel good. Walking may be an excellent way to spend time IF YOUR DOCTOR HAS APPROVED IT. Talk it over with the team to make the best plan for you. The better shape you are in when you go into surgery, the easier your recovery will be afterwards.

Patients are instructed to begin or continue a pulmonary rehabilitation program to maintain the highest possible level of cardiovascular and body health. The goal is to be able to walk for thirty minutes per day before your transplant.

Be ready to go to the hospital as soon as you are called. Arrange contact persons, transportation, and last minute plans AHEAD OF TIME.

Have an established plan for when you’re called to the hospital. You want to ensure that you have a designated driver, established transportation and have available phone numbers to put this plan in operation. Have money set aside in case you need to take a taxi and your designated driver is not available. Have a plan in place for child, dependent and pet care.

Keep on living your life while you wait!

Individual or family counseling is often recommended both before and after transplantation. Because of many stresses and adjustments with transplantation, it is helpful to discuss these with a counselor. This helps individuals and /or family members to communicate and best prepare for or cope with, the many changes and uncertainties of transplantation. For further assistance with identifying a counseling professional contact your coordinator or social worker to further assist you.

Can I Become Too Sick for a Transplant? Your Responsibilities While Listed

Transplant candidates may become too sick for lung transplant. If considered too sick for transplant you may be placed inactive but remain listed. This is usually a temporary status until your condition can be re-evaluated.

If you get sick at home while you are waiting and think you need to go to the hospital, go to the nearest facility. While you are being seen identify yourself as a patient waiting for lung transplant and ask the nurse or doctor to call us.

Patient responsibilities while listed:

Keep testing updated
Pulmonary Function testing with arterial blood gas every 3 months
Laboratory testing (CBC, Complete metabolic profile) every 3 months
Monthly clinic visits
Monthly blood testing PRA (Panel Reactive Antibody)

Annual re-testing and Health Screening update

Notify your Coordinator if you are hospitalized, sick and have a fever or flu like symptoms

Notify your Coordinator of any changes in health or medical urgency

Attend Education Meetings as possible. Learn as much as possible before your transplant.

Complete and update Immunizations

Ensure Financial Inventory – establish Transplant Assistance Funds as needed and assess the need for relocation if needed.

Notify transplant team of any changes in address, phone, insurance or travel plans

WHERE TO STAY: Accommodations near the medical campus include:

Transplant House
Jackson Towers
1500 NW 12th Avenue, 7th floor West
Miami, FL 33136
Phone: 305-585-1500

Marriott Spring Hill Suites Miami Arts/Health District
1311 NW 10th Avenue
Miami, FL 33136
Phone: 305-575-5300; toll-free 800-228-9290; fax 305-575-5301
Web: http://www.miamispringhill.com/

Should you require additional housing options, please discuss your needs with your transplant social worker.

What Happens When You Are Called

  • You may be called any time of the day or night.
  • Once called, you will be directed to either Jackson Memorial Hospital East Tower Holtz Admitting office during working hours (7a-9p) or Jackson Memorial Hospital Emergency Room  Admitting Office after hours. If you go to the Emergency Room let them know that you are scheduled for a transplant once you check in.
  • Unfortunately, you may have multiple “dry-runs” before your actual transplant occurs.

What to bring to the hospital:

Do bring:

  • List of medications. Bring your medications and if you are on IV infusion, bring additional supplies if needed. 
  • Additional Oxygen tanks if you are in need of continuous oxygen
  • Essential toiletries
  • Your transplant Journal available with your family to continue your learning process while in the intensive care unit. 
  • Contact list for family and friends to be contacted. 
  • Health care Proxy / advance directives. 
  • Identification and insurance card

 Don’t bring:

  • Valuables – Leave watches, money and other valuables at home or with the person who brings you.
  • Plants or flowers
  • Visitors under the age of 14 years.

Where to go: Refer to Campus Map

ADMITTING: Once confirmed for transplant proceed as directed to:

Jackson Memorial Hospital Holtz Admitting Office
1611 NW 12th Ave
Miami, FL 33136
Parking is available at Park Plaza West. Follow side walk East and Northeast to Holtz admitting.


Jackson Memorial Hospital Emergency Room
1611 NW 12th Ave
Miami, FL 33136
Parking is available at Park Plaza West. Follow side walk East and Northeast to Holtz Admitting.


Park Plaza West
1611 NW 12th Ave
Miami, FL 33136
Accessible through NW 12th Ave and NW 16th Street


During the Admission Process, you will be contacted by a member of the hospital to help move your admission along quickly.  You will be admitted to one of the cardiac or surgical units in West Wing.  Exit Holtz and enter main hospital to the right in the West Wing.


Once a surgery time has been determined, you will be transported to the operating rooms located in the Diagnostic Treatment Center (DTC).

AFTER YOUR TRANSPLANT – Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU)

You will awake in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit after your transplant.  Your family will be able to visit once you are stable.  There you will begin your recovery phase.