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Exeter

By Duncan Whitehead, with the help of "The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital
1741-2006" by Andrew Knox and Christopher Gardner-Thorpe

Harry Hall introduced acute haemodialysis to the Exeter area in 1967, he then started chronic dialysis in 1969, the dialysis unit was based in the Whipton hospital. Harry
Hall was a general physician with many interests including rheumatology, he also started up a rheumatology service in the Royal Devon and Exeter. Sadly Harry Hall died in 2011 after falling from a ladder.

Regarding the development of renal services in the RD & E, Terry Feest succeeded Tony Daly as a general physician with a renal interest in 1978 and Harry Hall gave up his
renal work at that time. There were around 70 patients on dialysis, awaiting a transplant or who had recieved a
transplant at that time.

Due to expanding numbers, a new renal unit was needed and Terry Feest moved the dialysis unit to a new unit based at the Royal Devon and Exeter (Wonford) site in 1982.

Satellite Haemodialysis units were required due to the large geographical spread of the renal patients served by the RD & E (A significant area of Devon and Somerset). The
first of these was a Portakabin haemodialysis unit opened in North Devon in 1985, which was one of the earliest satellite dialysis units opened in the UK. Anthony
Nicholls developed this model opening clinics in Taunton and Torbay in 1987 and 1988. Terry Feest moved to Southmead in 1991.

Renal Transplantation stopped in the RD & E in 1997 when Justin Morgan moved to Southmead, however this was a fairly colourful chapter of the Exeter renal units
history. Renal transplantation started in Exeter 1969 despite the South-West regional board not being in favour of it. Harry Hall was again the force of change. Cyril
Shaldon undertook the first renal transplant in Exeter in 1969, which made it the fourth (fifth or sixth -Editor) centre in the UK to carry out renal transplantation. In 1971 Michael Golby was appointed as a general surgeon, he was a trained transplant surgeon. Between 1972 and 1996 some where in the order of 500 to 600 renal transplants were performed,
with very good graft survival for the period.
The RD & E started elective ventillation for  transplantation in 1988 this raised a huge amount of debate and ended up being discussed in the House of Lords.
Eventually it was decided it should be illegal as such this approach to transplantation was stopped. This massively reduced the number of transplants in the RD & E
and the program stopped in 1996.

 

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