The UF Health Transplant Program has over 50 years of experience providing lifesaving treatments to patients around the world. As an industry leader in transplant medicine, our teams use a coordinated approach to care, with over 100 staff members dedicated to assisting our patients and their families through every phase of the transplant journey — from pre transplant to lifelong post-transplant care. These team members include physicians, surgeons, nurses, financial coordinators, donor coordinators, administrative support staff, social workers, physical and respiratory therapists and psychologists, all working together to provide patients with the best transplant experience possible. 2016 marked 50 years of excellence in transplantation at UF Health. Since June 25, 1966, when we performed the state of Florida’s first kidney transplant, UF Health has been an industry leader in transplant medicine, and its staff has provided unparalleled expertise in highly complex, lifesaving treatments for patients around the world.

Surgery Highlights

  • 1966
    Florida’s first adult and pediatric kidney transplants
  • 1981
    Florida’s first bone marrow transplant 
  • 1983
    Florida’s first pediatric bone marrow transplant
  • 1986
    Florida’s first pediatric heart transplant
  • 1987
    Florida’s first artificial heart transplant
  • 1991
    Florida’s first pediatric kidney-liver transplant
  • 1993
    Florida’s first neonatal heart transplant
  • 1994
    Florida’s first adult lung transplant
  • 1995
    Florida’s first pancreas transplant
  • 1996
    Florida’s first pediatric lung transplant
  • 1997
    Florida’s first “mini” bone marrow transplantation for lymphoma
  • 1998
    Florida’s first pediatric double-lung transplant
  • 2000
    North Florida’s first live-donor liver transplant
  • 2020
    First in Florida to perform a double-lung transplant on a COVID-19 survivor. Florida’s first triple-organ transplant of its kind (heart, liver and kidney)
  • 2021
    Pediatric Cardiology & Heart Surgery ranked #7 by U.S. News & World Report

I am Shands. I have worked here, been treated here, thrived here and survived here. It is quite the symbiotic relationship. I began working here in 2014 as a financial representative. One day, I began having excruciating head pain; it was debilitating. It ended up being a brain tumor. I was terrified. Kelly Foote, M.D., and Alexander Ayzengart, M.D., changed my life. I celebrate the milestone of life every day as I come to work. I am proud to be a part of such a diverse group of people with the same mission. I will be here to assist our post-heart transplant patients with joy and an appreciation for life. I am thankful to be a part of this amazing group of humans whose primary purpose is to help solve human problems.

Christie Carr-Freidin
Transplant Assistant, UF Health Shands Transplant Center