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An outpatient transplant evaluation can take four to six weeks, so it’s important to start the referral process for heart transplant patients early.

Our heart transplant program assistant will schedule an appointment for the patient to see a heart transplant cardiologist within our Sanger Heart & Vascular Institute within two weeks of the referral. Verbal or written contact will be made to the referring physician after the office visit.

When is it Time to Refer a Patient for Heart Transplant?

Patients should be referred for a heart transplant in the following scenarios:

  • Impairment of left ventricular function
  • Patient remains symptomatic on guideline directed medical therapy (Class 3-4)
  • End-stage cardiac disease
  • Deteriorating heart health and low projected chance for survival Poor prognosis for one-year survival

Information Needed for Heart Transplant Referrals

To refer a patient for heart transplant, include the following information:

  • Patient demographic information
  • Recent history and physical
  • Most recent echo report
  • Most recent cardiac catheterization report
  • Most recent right heart catheterization report
  • Recent labs
  • Medication list
  • Copy of front and back of insurance card(s)

Organ Sharing List

If a patient is deemed acceptable for heart transplant surgery and final insurance approval is obtained, the patient is placed on the United Network for Organ Sharing and Organ Procurement national list.

To remain on the waiting list, patients must complete:

  • An office visit with transplant cardiologist every three months or as needed
  • Lab work every three months or as needed
  • An annual mammogram
  • An annual gynecologic exam
  • An annual prostate examination
  • A right heart catheterization every six months

Organ allocation guidelines are based on United Network for Organ Sharing and Organ Procurement Transplant Network policies that include medical criteria, as well as the equitable utilization of organs. Specifically, the heart allocation policy considers characteristics of both the donor and the transplant candidate. Factors that determine who receives the organ include blood type, length of time spent on the waiting list and listing status.

To contact the Heart Transplant Program, call 704-355-6649.