You may have heard about improvements we are making to fix some long-standing issues within our cardiac surgery service at St George’s Hospital.

To help us do this, we have taken the decision today to temporarily transfer the operations of a small number of patients requiring the most complex cardiac surgery to other London hospitals.

This will give us the space to make the improvements to the service we all want to see. We would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, but would like to stress that all cardiac surgery operations will continue to be carried out by experienced and skilled cardiac surgeons, with the support of a multi-disciplinary team.

Which patients does this affect?

The cardiac surgery operations affected include both planned and emergency complex cases.

Despite this, we have written to patients currently on the waiting list for cardiac surgery, and made clear that we expect the vast majority of operations to continue to be carried out at St George’s.

The following services are unaffected, and will continue to be carried out at St George’s as they are currently:

  • Routine cardiac surgery at St George’s will continue
  • All cardiology services (including planned and emergency) at the Trust also continue as normal.

We would also ask patients to continue attending for all cardiac surgery outpatient appointments and operations unless they are contacted by members of the team at St George’s.

Jacqueline Totterdell, Chief Executive, said: “We have taken this decision to maintain patient safety, and to protect the long-term future of our cardiac surgery service.

“We are determined to resolve the serious issues in cardiac surgery identified by Professor Mike Bewick in his independent review – and this remains our focus. We also have to listen to our staff, and ensure the safety of our patients is protected at all times.”

“Finally, I would like to apologise to the very small number of patients for whom today’s decision may naturally cause some concern.

“However, I would like to stress that all cardiac surgery patients – wherever they are treated – will continue to receive safe and effective care.”

Further information:

The cardiac surgery service we provide at St George’s is safe, and we are committed to providing the best possible care for all of our patients.

If you are a patient, please call the number on your appointment or operation letter, or contact our Patient Advice and Liaison (PALS) team during office hours on 020 8725 2453/email