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Children’s Heart Unit

The Children’s Heart Unit in Newcastle provides care for children who need medical and surgical help for conditions involving the heart, lungs and airways.

We are based at the Freeman Hospital - the only unit in the UK that can offer children all forms of heart treatment under one roof, regardless of the patient’s age.


The services we provide

Most of our patients come from the North of England, but children are referred to us from all parts of the UK and Ireland for treatments such as:

  • Cardiopulmonary (heart and lung) transplantation and mechanical support to transplant (VAD) - one of only two units in the UK to carry out these treatments
  • ECMO life support – we are one of only three units in the UK to offer respiratory ECMO
  • Heart rhythm treatment (for problems with the rhythm of the heart beat)
  • Paediatric Congenital (from birth) cardiology heart disease
  • Paediatric cardiac surgery
  • Respiratory disease
  • Paediatric cardiac critical care
  • Paediatric cardiac Anaesthesia.

By providing these treatments over the years, we have developed the skills and the support systems to carry out high-risk children’s heart surgery with excellent results.

Leading the way

The Freeman leads the way in the UK to provide treatment for infants and children with ‘end-stage’ heart failure.

We have a wide range of experts working together in specialist teams delivering innovative and outstanding care - our results are second-to-none in the UK.

We carried out the UK’s first successful infant heart transplant in 1987. We were also the first in the world to help a young baby to survive with an artificial heart (for four months), while the baby’s own heart recovered.

Our vision for children’s heart services is to provide excellent services, ensuring that every child is at the centre of everything we do, and using cutting-edge technology to achieve the best possible results.

Investing in the future

We are extremely proud of our Children’s Heart Unit. We have invested a lot of resources in the unit and we will continue investing to keep up with technology. Our exciting developments include:

  • the new Paediatric cardiac Intensive Care Unit
  • improved ward facilities incorporating a new High Dependency Unit
  • the superb charity-funded parents’ and carers’ accommodation on the Freeman Hospital site.

More information

For more information about working on the Children's Heart Unit, please contact:

  • Matron Angie Johnson                     
  • email: angie.johnson@nuth.nhs.uk                
  • tel: 0191 244 8479

You can find out more about the Children's Heart Unit.

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