Hennepin Healthcare’s Kidney Transplant Program Celebrates 60th Anniversary


In February of 1963, Hennepin Healthcare’s Kidney Transplant Program performed the first kidney transplant in the upper Midwest. Since then, thousands of patients with kidney disease have found new life with thanks to receiving a kidney transplant.

On Saturday, February 11, patients, their families, donors, Transplant Program team members and friends will come together to celebrate this history of innovative, lifesaving and life-changing care.

“We have the privilege of witnessing remarkable transformations almost every day,” explains Dr. John Silkenson, Medical Director of Hennepin Healthcare’s Kidney Transplant Program. “We care for patients who are pre-transplant and post-transplant. Receiving a healthy kidney after months – maybe years – of dialysis is a game-changer. We celebrate these successes with our patients and their families, and now we’re marking 60 years of innovative leadership this program has made for transplant care and research. Until kidney disease can be eradicated, we will continue to provide the most comprehensive, state-of-the-art care for our patients.”

Who:               Hennepin Healthcare’s Kidney Transplant Program
What:             60th Anniversary of First Kidney Transplant in the Upper Midwest
When:             Saturday, February 11 from 10 a.m. to Noon
Where:           Stillman Education and Community Room, Hennepin Healthcare’s Clinic & Specialty Center, 715 S. 8th St. Mpls., MN 55404 (program at 10:30 a.m.)

Free parking will be available in the ramp beneath the Clinic & Specialty Center for those attending the event.

Hennepin Healthcare is a nationally recognized system of care that includes HCMC, a Level I Trauma Center and public teaching hospital. The centerpiece of Hennepin County’s clinical health services, Hennepin Healthcare offers a full spectrum of inpatient and outpatient services, including its Transplant Program, which is celebrating 60 years of providing kidney transplant services to patients and their families.

HCMC’s transplant program marks World Kidney Day


On Thursday, March 9, 2017 Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) will partner with the National Kidney Foundation to raise awareness about kidney transplant as part of World Kidney Day. The event is one of many taking place during March, which is National Kidney Month.

Bodner, Jennifer#304
Jenny Bodner, RN

“Chronic kidney disease is described as diminishing kidney function that can be from mild to severe.” explains Jenny Bodner, RN, Certified Clinical Transplant Coordinator at HCMC. “It’s so important to keep these organs healthy. That’s why we’re happy for the opportunity to partner with the National Kidney Foundation to focus on kidney disease prevention as well as providing information about transplant.”

Bodner will answer questions about kidney disease and transplant at the skyway level of AT&T Tower in Minneapolis on Thursday.

Who:   Hennepin County Medical Center’s Kidney Transplant Program

What: Kidney transplant awareness activities, Bernie the Rescue Dog

Where: AT&T Tower, 901 Marquette Ave. Minneapolis, Skyway Level

When: 11AM – 1 PM

Why:   World Kidney Day events sponsored by the National Kidney Foundation

“Kidneys are busy organs, performing many functions that are essential to life- from cleaning out the toxins that build up in our bodies, regulating electrolytes and playing a role in stabilizing blood pressure,” said Bodner.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, in Minnesota alone there are an estimated 400,000 people living with kidney disease, and nearly 9,000 of these are on either dialysis or on the transplant wait list.

HCMC was the first transplant program in the Upper Midwest. Established in 1963, the transplant program has played a vital role in the treatment of chronic kidney disease with kidney transplantation. For more information, go to www.hcmc.org/transplant.

The National Kidney Foundation is the leading organization in the U.S. dedicated to the awareness, prevention, and treatment of kidney disease. For more information, visit www.kidney.org.