Since 2014, the Penn Lung Rescue program provides the Philadelphia region with expanded access to Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO), a lifesaving treatment option for patients with acute respiratory or heart failure.
"There were a number of reports coming out of Europe regarding successful Mobile ECMO programs," explained William Vernick, MD, Co-Medical Director, Penn Lung Rescue, on the creation of Penn Lung Rescue. "We said 'Not only does our region need this, but this is something we could do -- and should do.'" He continued, “…The real key to the continued success of our program is the amazing team and resources we have access to here [at Penn]."
Many patients with severe cardiopulmonary dysfunctions, such as respiratory insufficiency or critical cardiac conditions, are too unstable to transport by ambulance. Penn’s Lung Rescue team, which operates via helicopter, was specifically designed to be mobile and work by a patient’s bedside — allowing Penn physicians to assist clinical teams that do not have the same resources to stabilize and transport critically ill patients to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center.
"What makes our Lung Rescue program unique is a commitment to the best quality of care for our patients," said Wilson Y. Szeto, MD, Chief of Cardiovascular Surgery at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center.
Penn's Mobile ECMO Team published data on Penn Medicine’s Mobile ECMO program in the Journal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia in 2017.
Learn more about Mobile ECMO at Penn
Contact Penn’s Lung Rescue team
Refer a patient to Penn Medicine
View Dr. Vernick’s physician profile
View Dr. Szeto’s physician profile
Read Penn clinical briefing, ‘ECMO as Bridge to Lung Transplant
Read research on Penn’s Mobile ECMO program (PubMed)
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