Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Baptist Enhances Transplant Ability / Research Efforts to Establish Baptist as Regional Transplant Center

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Baptist Enhances Transplant Ability / Research Efforts to Establish Baptist as Regional Transplant Center

Article excerpt

Groundwork to propel Baptist Medical Center of Oklahoma City into a regional or national cardiac transplan tation facility is being laid by the administration - and long-range goals are even loftier.

Two research-oriented surgeons are joining the heart transplant team directed by Dr. Nazih Zuhdi, who performed seven transplant operations at Baptist, beginning in March, 1985, it was reported by President Philip Newbold.

Acknowledging the new emphasis on research, Newbold says the intent is to turn Baptist into a transplant center, moving beyond cardiac transplantation into heart-lung, kidney and possibly liver transplants.

Developments toward that goal include:

- Dr. Stan Dahr, Oklahoma City cardiologist, has contributed $1 million to build a transplant research center at Baptist, said Newbold. Dahr called it "a contribution to science."

- Dr. Dimitri Novitzky, a research specialist in France and Argentina, joined the transplant team this week, said Newbold.

- Scheduled to arrive later in the week is Dr. David Cooper, a British-trained researcher whose primary field is organ preservation.

Meanwhile, Dr. Allen Greer, who assisted Zuhdi in the first seven transplants, will continue as a member of the transplant team.

According to Newbold, Dr. Christiaan Barnard, the South African who performed the world's first heart transplant, continues as scientist in residence and will return to Baptist soon as an adviser.

Four candidates for cardiac transplantation are at Baptist now awaiting donor hearts. They have been registered with the national computer system that matches recipients.

Four of the seven recipients of donor hearts at Baptist are living.

The credentials of Barnard, Novitzky and Cooper underscore the hospital's stated goal of achieving national status as a research center, Newbold pointed out. Between them, the three surgeons have authored over 70 books and scientific articles.

"We believe it's necessary to have a clinical research component," said Newbold. …

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