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Author Notes:

Correspondence: James M. Blum, Department of Anesthesiology, Emory University School of Medicine, 1841 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30329. Email: jmblum@emory.edu

Disclosure: The authors have no conflicts of interest to report. Go to:



  • extracorporeal membrane oxygenation
  • implementation
  • outcome
  • adult

Rapid Development and Implementation of an ECMO program

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Journal Title:

ASAIO Journal


Volume 62, Number 3


, Pages 354-358

Type of Work:

Article | Final Publisher PDF


Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is an established therapy in the management of patients with refractory cardiogenic shock or acute respiratory failure.In this report, we describe the rapid development and implementation of an organized ECMO program at a facility that previously provided ad hoc support. The program provides care for patients within the Emory Healthcare system and throughout the Southeastern United States.From September 2014 to February 2015, 16 patients were treated with either venovenous or venoarterial ECMO with a survival to decannulation of 53.3% and survival to ICU discharge of 40%. 10/16 patients were transfers from outside facilities of which 2 were remotely cannulated and initiated on ECMO support by our ECMO transport team. Complications included intracerebral hemorrhage, bleeding from other sites, and limb ischemia.The results suggest that a rapidly developed ECMO program can provide safe transport services and provide outcomes similar to those in the existing literature. Key components appear to be institutional commitment, a physician champion, multidisciplinary leadership, and organized training. Further study is required to determine if outcomes will continue to improve.

Copyright information:

© 2016 by the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

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