How Howard White got a second heart

How Howard White got a second heart

one hand giving a fake heart to another hand


In this article:

  • The Providence Heart Institute gave Howard White, basketball expert and advisor to Michael Jordan, a second chance.

  • Congestive heart failure has many treatment options, including transplant.

Across seven states, Providence sees many inspirational patient stories every day. Behind every patient story, there’s a “why” our caregivers seek to uncover. This “why” is what motivates our clinical and surgical experts to show up every day. Our unwavering effort to see the life in every patient is why patients continually turn to Providence for care.

When famed basketball maven Howard White learned his heart was failing, he turned to the dream team at Providence to keep his legacy alive. Led by Dr. Jacob Abraham, Medical Director of Providence Heart Institute’s Center for Advanced Heart Disease in Portland, Oregon, Mr. White’s clinical team knew he was a likely candidate for a heart transplant.

“From the medical perspective, he was clearly in congestive heart failure, which led us to pursue investigation for a heart transplant,” said Dr. Abraham.

From congestive heart failure to new heart

“I remember plain as day when they walked in my hospital room and said ‘you might need a new heart,’” said Mr. White. Unfazed and always the optimist, Mr. White simply asked about the next steps. “When I think about how the best teams work, it is a collaborative effort; when I came into get my heart transplant, I just saw these doctors…they were a team.”

Watch Mr. White's story of perseverance below.

Mr. White inspired us, and we hope you will find inspiration in his story, too.

Note: This video was produced in partnership with Courageous Studios, a brand studio for CNN. 

Experience more stories from Providence by visiting our blog.


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