PORTLAND, Ore. -- Providence Heart Institute says it has the highest volume and most comprehensive heart program between Seattle and San Francisco. To boost the program even more, Phil and Penny Knight are giving a $75 million gift . The money will support continued growth and innovation in cardiac services, including the development of a heart transplant program at Providence.
Providence says this donation is one of the largest gifts ever made to a community hospital. It builds on $25 million given by the Knights in 2014, which was matched by other generous donors to complete a $50 million campaign.
Over the past five years, the institute has focused on three centers of activity to support health and innovation: clinical care, prevention and wellness, and research and innovation. Now, they will begin a heart transplant program, which includes formal certification of the program and recruiting a transplant surgeon.
“Given we have nearly all the required infrastructure already, we anticipate starting a heart transplant program here at Providence within a year,” said Dr. Oseran.
This announcement comes at the same time Oregon Health and Science University announced it will be reactivating its heart transplant program. Back in August of 2018, OHSU suspended services after a specialist left and two others were planning departures from the heart transplant program team. Associate Director of OHSU Strategic Communications Tamara Hargens-Bradley said in a statement at the time "The remainder of the program team will continue to work and actively care for patients." March 14, 2019, OHSU announced plans to reactivate its Heart Transplant Program. No timeline was given.
“For the past five months Providence Heart Institute has been providing critically needed services for nearly 400 additional patients who had previously received a heart transplant or an implanted left ventricular assist device and received care at OHSU,” said Dr. Oseran. “It’s clear that our state needs an established, comprehensive and stable set of services for these vulnerable patients.”
“This is not about prestige or competition or money,” said Lisa Vance, chief executive for Providence Health & Services in Oregon. “It’s about vulnerable people and families who need quality care close to home. We feel that we are in a unique position to deliver that care.”
“Providence Heart Institute is considered one of the best cardiac programs on the West Coast and we have been able to consistently recruit outstanding physicians from the top programs in the country to join us,” said Dr. Oseran. “The generous support we have received from our community has helped foster a dynamic culture of innovation with the patient at the center of everything we do.”