Late last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Steve Jobs had a liver transplant in April. As of this morning, however, we still hadn't received confirmation from either Apple or any of the hospitals at which the procedure might have been performed. That's changed. Earlier today, Methodist University Hospital in Memphis released a statement confirming the surgery, with Steve's permission:
"I am pleased to confirm today, with the patient's permission, that Steve Jobs received a liver transplant at Methodist University Hospital Transplant Institute in partnership with the University of Tennessee in Memphis ... Our one-year patient and graft survival rates are among the best in the nation and were a dominant reason in Mr. Jobs's choice of transplant centers."
James D. Eason, M.D., Program Director at Methodist University Hospital's Transplant Institute, composed the statement and explained that Steve went through the typical transplant eligibility process; in order to receive a donor liver, he had to be the sickest person on the list when the matching organ became available.
This statement stands in contrast to the theories considered in today's New York Times piece about Steve's surgery, which noted that past preferential treatment for celebrities and wealthy patients has largely been ended but there are still ways in which someone with Jobs's resources could try to game the system. The Memphis transplant center has one of the shortest waiting periods in the US for liver patients.
Let us extend a "Well done" to the medical team and "Speedy recovery" to Steve.