Hungary celebrates 25th anniversary of first heart transplant operation

The transplant was performed in January 1992 at Semmelweis University by cardiac surgeon Zoltán Szabó and his team

Hungary has celebrated the 25th anniversary of its first heart transplant operation in Budapest.

According to MTI, the transplant was performed on January 3, 1992, at Semmelweis University, by cardiac surgeon Zoltán Szabó and his team. The patient, Sándor Schwartz, was 24 years old at the time of the operation, which was deemed a success.

Béla Merkely, vice rector of Budapest’s Semmelweis Medical University, said that the anniversary “gives hope to patients waiting for a new heart and ensures recognition to people working to produce similar achievements”.

Since 1992, the Heart and Vascular Centre of Semmelweis University has conducted 412 heart transplants, about 90 percent of all those operations in Hungary. Last year the centre performed 51 heart transplants, the second highest number in Europe, which put the institution among the top ten in the world.

The commemoration was addressed by state secretary for education László Palkovics, who noted the importance of integrating training and treatment. He said that the government was planning to spend a total 150 billion HUF on the reform of medical education in Hungary.