Health Care

Spectrum Health receives approval to perform lung transplants

West Michigan patients can now be put on a waiting list.

December 3, 2012
| By Pete Daly |
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The Spectrum Health system is comprised of nine hospitals and 183 service sites. Photo via

Spectrum Health’s application to perform lung transplants has been approved by the United Network for Organ Sharing, and patients can now be placed on the Grand Rapids hospital’s waiting list.

UNOS is a private nonprofit organization that manages the U.S. organ transplant system. Certification by UNOS signifies an organization meets all institutional and personnel qualifications required.

“This is a significant milestone for our patients and for us,” said Dr. Reda Girgis, medical director of Spectrum Health’s lung transplant program and a member of Spectrum Health Medical Group. “We can now place West Michigan patients on our waiting list and they’ll be able to receive this gift of life closer to home.”

Girgis said the first transplant may take place before February. Each potential recipient is carefully evaluated to ensure the greatest likelihood for a successful outcome.

In 2011, more than 1,800 lung transplants were performed in the U.S. More than 1,600 candidates are now on the waiting lists across the country.

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