UA's prestigous transplant programs thrown into turmoil
The hospital that shined so brightly during the darkness of the 2011 Tucson shootings is in a bitter professional dispute that has impaired its transplant services. The University of Arizona Medical Center's world-famous heart transplant program is on hiatus, as is its lung transplant program. Two other programs recently closed after the doctor who created them — department of surgery head Dr. Rainer Gruessner — was forbidden from setting foot in the hospital where he'd worked for the past six years. Before his suspension, Gruessner had brought stability to a historically troubled department that's vital to Tucson. He more than doubled the number of surgeons, added new transplant services and rebuilt Southern Arizona's lone top-level trauma center for people with life-threatening injuries.
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