High-speed mercy dash saves double lung transplant patient

A lung transplant surgery is performed at Wuhan University People’s Hospital after a 12-hour delivery covering 1,200 kilometers. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

China’s high-speed rail network helped save the life of a 37-year-old man waiting for a double lung transplant in Wuhan, Hubei province.

The lungs were en route from Beijing to Wuhan when the train was halted in Handan, Hebei province, due to heavy snow, Chutian Metropolis Daily reported on Friday.

The train was given priority over other trains after Xie Songping, a thoracic surgeon from Wuhan University People’s Hospital who was overseeing delivery, explained the emergency to the conductor, resulting in a delay of only 69 minutes.

Wuhan police also helped accelerate the delivery between the station and the hospital, with the 1,200-km trip completed in just six hours.

The whole process, from donor to recipient, took 12 hours, the longest time recommended for a successful lung transplant, according to Kang Ganjun, deputy director of thoracic surgery at the hospital.

The patient was diagnosed with type II respiratory failure this year.

Zhu Fangjie contributed to this story

The donated lungs are en route from Beijing to Wuhan, Hubei province, on Thursday.
[Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

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