Nine patients receive life-saving transplant surgery over Easter weekend

April 20, 2016

Thanks to the generosity of families across the country, LHSC’s Multi-Organ Transplant Program had an unprecedented Easter holiday weekend, transplanting 11 organs into nine different patients.

While many staff and physicians spent time with family over the holiday weekend, it took a dedicated team to help save so many lives – the operating rooms at University Hospital barely stopped during the entire weekend with more than 72 hours required for those transplant surgeries.

This incredible success is being celebrated during National Organ & Tissue Donation Awareness Week (April 17-23), which encourages Canadians to register their intent to become an organ donor and to have a conversation with their loved ones about their decision.

In total, between nine patients, LHSC teams transplanted one heart, three livers, one combined kidney/pancreas, one double kidney and three single kidney transplants.

"This would not have been possible without the collaboration of many departments who worked together to ensure a successful outcome for these nine patients. It was an extraordinary accomplishment and we are fortunate to have such an outstanding transplant team here in London.” says Dr. Anthony Jevnikar, co-director of the Multi-Organ Transplant Program.

"I want to thank all those individuals who gave up time with from their families over the holiday weekend to ensure these nine patients received their life-altering transplant surgeries. More importantly, I’d like to thank the donors and their families for giving this gift of life."

If you have not yet registered your consent to become an organ donor, visit – it just takes two minutes and your health card. Anyone over the age of 16 can register and people of all ages and medical histories should consider themselves potential donors. And even if a person has signed a donor card, they still need to register online or by visiting a ServiceOntario centre. Donor cards are no longer used in Ontario.

"Our region is fortunate to have some of the highest organ and tissue donor rates in Canada, but there is room for improvement. I encourage everyone to register their consent to donate, and just as importantly discuss their wishes with family members,” says Dr. Jevnikar.