Heart transplant: patient survival at one year after transplant

heart transplant involves replacing one person’s malfunctioning heart with a heart from a deceased organ donor.

While some patients have a higher risk of dying than others, some complications contributing to patient death may be avoidable. If a hospital has a significantly better survival rate than one would expect for patients at that hospital, after taking into account characteristics of the patients and organ donors and the experience of similar patients in the entire country, it may indicate that the hospital provides a higher level of patient care. The expected survival rates do not account for all factors contributing to death within a year after transplant. For example, a small number of cases can negatively affect the death rate substantially.

There are several methods typically used to track survival data. One looks at survival during a specific period of time (see chart below), and one looks at survival over the lifetime of the program (see survival curve for heart transplantation program).

About this measure

The first graph below shows the percentage of patient survival after one year for heart transplants performed at the hospital. The second graph shows a trend over time for this measure. 

Note: According to the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR), the national registry responsible for this measure, Northwestern Memorial Hospital's patient survival rate is statistically the same as what is expected for similar patients.

In this case, a higher number is better.  

Most Recent Available Data (Percent)
Northwestern Memorial 90
National Average 91
Performance Trend (Percent)
  2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Northwestern Memorial 100 100 93 89 92 90
National Average 88 88.5 89 90 91 91
Source:Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients, www.ustransplant.org
Heart patient survival