St Vincents, Sydney

St Vincent’s Hospital


Heart & Lung Transplant Unit

A major public hospital and a principal referral hospital, St Vincent's specialises in heart/lung transplantation; bone marrow transplantation; cardiology; cancer; HIV medicine; respiratory medicine; mental health; and drug and alcohol services.
The Hospital has a long-standing reputation for treating the highest acuity and complex patient loads, attracting referrals on a state-wide and national basis.
St Vincent's functions as part of the South East Area Health Service under a Memorandum of Understanding between the Board of SV&MHS, the Area Health Board and the Minister for Health. The Hospital is a teaching hospital of the UNSW and has academic associations with the Australian Catholic University, Sydney University and the University of Technology, Sydney
Located in Darlinghurst, Sydney, St Vincent’s Hospital is only minutes from Sydney CDB which comprises of: The Rocks, Milsons Point, Pyrmont, Surrey Hills, Kings Cross, Woolloomooloo, Elizabeth Bay, Rushcutters Bay, Double Bay, and Vaucluse. There are also excellent hotels, bars, cafes and restaurants just minutes from St Vincent’s Hospital main entrance.

The St Vincent’s Hospital transplant program is one of the largest and longest running programs in Australia with survival rates which exceed that of the international figures. The first heart transplant in Australia was performed by Dr Harry Windsor at St Vincent’s Hospital in 1968. However, it was not until 1984 that the National Heart Transplant Program was commenced by Dr Victor Chang and the second heart transplant was carried out eventually leading to the first heart-lung transplant in 1986. It was only natural that the heart transplantation program would soon be followed by the development of a lung transplantation program. This milestone was reached in 1990 when the first single lung transplant in Australia was performed at St Vincent’s Hospital and the program has since expanded to include bilateral lung transplantation. The transplant unit also runs a mechanical heart device program which can offer patients waiting for a donor to become available an improved quality of life and increased chance of survival; this technology is also a treatment option for patients with heart failure who are not eligible for transplantation.

The transplant unit is the only heart and lung transplant program in New South Wales and as such has transplanted many recipients from metropolitan and rural regions like Moree, Wagga Wagga, and Tamworth. Furthermore, the St Vincent’s Hospital transplant unit is also the major referral centre for South Australia and has performed many successful transplants on recipients from the southern state.

The transplant unit is involved in cutting edge research and clinical trials and has affiliations with Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and the Garvan Institute for Medical Research.

The heart and lung transplantation program at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney performs on average approximately 20 heart and 35 lung transplants a year. To date the unit has performed more than 1200 transplants, 709 hearts transplants, 339 bilateral lungs transplants, 141 single lung transplants and 76 heart-lung transplants.

The heart and lung transplantation program at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney is government funded, although relies heavily on donations from the community.

For further information please contact either:

Ms Michelle Harkess
Clinical Nurse Consultant
Heart & Lung Transplantation

Ms Bernadette Madigan
Nursing Unit Manager
Heart Lung Clinic