UPMC-Managed ISMETT Expands Sicilian Hospital, Celebrates 20th Anniversary

By: Wendy Zellner and Simona Abbro

ISMETT in Southern Italy recently celebrated its 20th anniversary with the opening of new cardiology and pediatric departments.ISMETT, a leading transplant center managed by UPMC in Palermo, Sicily, has recently expanded to offer more high-specialty services to children and adults.

The new additions bring ISMETT’s total to 114 beds, up from 78 in 2011 in this government-accredited research hospital.  The first Italian hospital dedicated solely to solid organ transplantation, ISMETT treats more than 30,000 patients a year with severe organ disease.

The new 10-bed pediatric department houses all single-patient rooms and a playroom, pharmacy and offices. In a separate cardiac wing, 23 additional adult beds have been added, along with a lounge and pharmacy. Space was also constructed to accommodate specialized medical equipment, including a vital-signs monitoring system and digital x-ray device.

On May 16, ISMETT officially celebrated its 20th anniversary with a ceremony attended by the mayor of Palermo, the president of the region and other top government and UPMC leaders, followed by a ribbon-cutting to officially open the new areas.

“We celebrate our past achievements as well as the bright future of this life-saving facility,” said Dr. Angelo Luca, director of ISMETT. “Thanks to investments made by the Region of Sicily and the expertise of our clinicians at ISMETT and UPMC, we are able to provide the most innovative and highly specialized therapies in the country.”  Every year, he noted, a third of the patients are admitted under urgent conditions, and about 20 percent are referred from other hospitals, suggesting that ISMETT is fully integrated into the regional health care system.

UPMC-Managed ISMETT Expands Sicilian Hospital, Celebrates 20th AnniversaryMore than 1,900 transplants have been performed at ISMETT since the first one in 1999. Of those, 207 were performed on pediatric patients, and more than 300 were living donor kidney or liver transplants.

“ISMETT was established two decades ago as an innovative public-private partnership between the Region of Sicily and UPMC, and it continues to thrive today,” said Charles Bogosta, president of UPMC International. “The growth ISMETT has seen, both in patient volume and physical space, demonstrates our commitment to providing high-quality care close to home for patients in Sicily and around the world.”