The Implantable Artificial Heart Project
Press Conferences
News Releases
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Images and Diagrams
The AbioCor Replacement Heart
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Images and Diagrams
The Researchers
Laman A. Gray, Jr., M.D.
Robert D. Dowling, M.D.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What type of exercise program is the patient taking part in?

The patient is receiving daily physical therapy. He is increasing his muscle strength by utilizing isometric exercises. He is doing flexion and extension exercises as well as light weight lifting with his arms and legs.

Why has a “quiet period” been implemented? Why isn’t information being released about the patient?

Throughout the planning of the AbioCor clinical trial, ABIOMED and all five of the clinical sites, including Jewish Hospital and the University of Louisville have wished and agreed to give priority to the patient and the family’s needs. It is our judgment that the foremost concern is the quality of care for the patient as well as protection of the privacy, confidentiality and dignity of the patient and his family. In that regard, throughout this endeavor and as stated in numerous other media briefings, we have wished to undertake a very controlled approach to media releases. We would note that the patient and the family expressed to the clinical team at the time of evaluation that they did not wish any publicity until such time as they could comfortably respond. As of yesterday, July 10, the family again expressed their desire for Jewish Hospital and the doctors to continue with the quiet period. We will continue with the quiet period and non-disclosure of patient and family information until such time as it is felt appropriate and reflective of changes in the patient’s condition that warrant discussion.

Why has the hospital over the past weekend referred calls to ABIOMED rather than responding to questions?

As had previously been announced, we wished to maintain a quiet period as it relates to the patient condition and other matters concerning patient care. It was appropriate to reference ABIOMED since the hospital recognized that there could be research and or technical questions concerning the ABIOMED device and that those most appropriately would be answered by ABIOMED.

Who is paying for the patient’s care?

Consistent with patient confidentiality, the hospital has elected to not discuss reimbursement for the patient’s care just as they would not release payor type or reimbursement schedules for any other patient receiving care at Jewish Hospital without family consent. As guaranteed in the clinical trial’s Informed Consent (available for review on ABIOMED’s website at the patient will bear no personal financial responsibility.

Please provide info regarding the patient advocate.

As has been stated from the beginning, ABIOMED has required of all participating clinical centers that a patient advocate be made available to all prospective participants in the AbioCor trial, in order to assure appropriate attention to ethical and moral issues associated with the trial. The University and Jewish Hospital have enthusiastically embraced this concept. More information concerning the formation of the patient advocacy foundation can be obtained by contacting E. Haavi Morreim, Ph.D., during the weekday at 901-448-5725 or during the evenings at 901-755-7479.

©2001 Jewish Hospital, University of Louisville Health Sciences Center, ABIOMED, Inc.
Jewish Hospital University of Louisville Health Sciences Center