The unit is based at Wythenshawe Hospital, a large Teaching Hospital in the South of Manchester. It is one of only five Heart and Lung Transplant centres in the UK covering the whole of the North -West of England. It undertakes about 60 transplants per annum. In Addition it also implants Ventricular Assist Devices to bridge patients to heart transplants.
Background to the Charity
In 1986 it was announced that Wythenshawe was to become the fourth UK Heart Transplant centre – the other transplant centres being in Middlesex (Harefield), Cambridge (Papworth) and Newcastle upon Tyne, (Freeman) However, the local health authority would not allow the first operation to take place until £100k (the estimated cost of the first five operations) had been raised from voluntary contributions. As a result, New Heart New Start was set up in September 1986 to raise the necessary funds. The first transplant operation went ahead in April 1987, rapidly followed by a further four operations. Despite the success of these operations, funding from the Department of Health was not forthcoming until a total of 10 transplants were completed. The charity immediately set to work raising a further £100k and successfully raised this amount by autumn 1987.In December 1987, ten operations had been successfully completed and the Wythenshawe transplant surgeons were summoned to the Department of Health to discuss the progress of the programme. They were told the Department would take over the future funding of heart transplants but our funding would not begin until April 1989. For the next 18 months the charity worked to bridge the gap in funding and went on to fund nearly 50 transplants. The Charity changed its name to New Start when the unit commenced Lung Transplantation
The Charity is very pro- active providing funds to support the Heart and Lung Transplantation programme. It employs one member of staff who has an office within the unit. Please see the “What we do Section” to see our recent projects.