The primary purpose of the Heart Exchange is to provide emotional support for transplant patients (Heart, Kidney, Lu, Liver, and Lung) during the difficult wait for a donor organ and to support those who have received transplants at CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston, Texas.
Members of the group are available to visit patients and families in the hospital, and we sponsor a supportive "Heart Exchange social" each month at CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center.
We contribute financial support to CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center and the Texas Heart Institute for the development and improvement of transplantation facilities and research. The Heart Exchange makes funds available to CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center transplant nurses to further their professional growth through transplant-related seminars.
...Heart Exchange Beginnings
Heart Exchange Support Group was founded in the mid 1980’s by a small group of heart transplant recipients and spouses. The members realized the need to support each other through the sometimes-stressful transplant experience.
The primary purposes of the organization were to provide a support system for patients and families of patients awaiting heart transplants or recovering from transplants and to promote organ donor awareness. Several years later the membership expanded to include patients of all organ transplants and LVAD patients.
Originally meetings were held monthly in member’s homes. A visitation schedule was implemented to ensure that all new patients received a visit from a transplant recipient. Eventually with the request and support of the Transplant Service meetings were held at the hospital. Patients on the transplant floor were encouraged to attend the social portion of the monthly meeting to meet other recipients and families.
The organization was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) in 1986. We expanded over 10 years ago to include emotional support to patients and families undergoing ( HEART - KIDNEY - LIVER & LUNG ) transplants.