First Kidney Transplants in Ethiopia Supported by U-M

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After spending more than two years to help to establish a transplant program, the University of Michigan (U-M) team helps St. Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College in Ethiopia perform their first kidney transplants. U-M Transplant Surgeon Jeffrey D. Punch, MD led a team that did three kidney transplants in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. All three transplants were from living donors and all recipients and donors are doing well.

This collaboration started through the initiative of Senait Fisseha, M.D, J.D., an adjunct professor in U-M Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Fisseha, who was born in Ethiopia, has been the key driver of the collaboration between U-M and St. Paul’s, and first took Punch to Ethiopia to support the surgery residency training program. Fisseha also introduced Punch to the Minister of Health of Ethiopia who asked the two U-M doctors to help Ethiopia start a kidney transplant program.

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