“When you work in transplant it can be easy to get the impression that everyone is sick, everyone has complications,” said Fridell. “The reality is that the majority of patients do very well, are here briefly, and you hardly get an opportunity to know them.”
The event serves as a reminder of the incredible gift of life that organ donors give. Invited to the event were two transplant recipients, whose lives were changed by the work of the transplant division, who shared their stories.
“None of this would be possible without the organ donors and their families,” said Fridell, asking the crowd to celebrate the gift of donors by substituting a thunderous round of applause for the traditional moment of silence.
The transplant team that Fridell oversees has accomplished several momentous achievements and consistently ranks as one of the top transplant programs in the country.
“We made the top 10 list of abdominal transplant programs in the country by volume,” said Fridell. “Last year, IU Health ranked third for liver transplants at 164, the most we have had in one year since 2005.”
Fridell also highlighted an upcoming living donor liver transplantation program that was recently approved by the United Network for Organ Sharing. He also went on to highlight programs such as the pediatric kidney, liver and intestine program at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health —the eighth-largest pediatric abdominal transplant program in the nation.
“I think it is important to note that there were 109 transplant centers in the United States in 2019 that performed pediatric abdominal transplants, and our program ranked fourth in intestinal transplants, ninth in liver transplants and 19th in kidney transplants,” said Fridell.
The views expressed in this content represent the perspective and opinions of the author and may or may not represent the position of Indiana University School of Medicine.
Marco Gutierrez is a communications coordinator for the Indiana University School of Medicine, where he supports the Department of Surgery and the Office of Strategic Communications. Before joining the Office of Strategic Communications, Marco worked for...