Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin’s transplant program has been placed on probation by the national organization that manages transplants.
The decision by the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, which is operated by the United Network for Organ Sharing, is a response to “a single, complex transplant case,” according to the hospital.
Froedtert is not disclosing more information regarding the case, citing HIPAA privacy laws.
Probation is a designation of a network member that is “executing a corrective action plan for noncompliance with OPTN policies or bylaws, or a serious lapse in patient safety or quality of care,” according to the OPTN.
Froedtert representatives were interviewed by an OPTN committee in January related to “quality concerns” with its abdominal organ transplantation services, according to the OPTN. That committee concluded that the hospital required “additional close monitoring as it continues to implement changes to address the identified patient safety issues.”
Hospital representatives appeared before the OPTN board of directors in June, at which point the board approved the recommendation to put Froedtert’s program on probation.
“We are very disappointed and believe this decision is unwarranted,” said Nalissa Wienke, media relations associate for Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin. “It does not accurately reflect the quality, ethics, practices and outcomes of our program, which consistently meet or exceed national benchmarks. We’ve never received a disciplinary action of any kind in our program’s 50 years.”
The probation status will continue for at least 12 months, during which the hospital will have site visits by United Network for Organ Sharing representatives and regularly report to the agency.
Froedtert is allowed to continue performing transplants during that time.
“We are fully operational, functional, credentialed and able to provide ongoing care, whether it is for transplant evaluation, while waiting for a transplant, while receiving a transplant or for post-transplant care,” Wienke said.
Wienke added that the hospital is working with UNOS “to address their concern and hope probation will be lifted as soon as possible.”
Three other hospitals across the country are currently on probation, according to the OPTN website.