Celebrating 25 years of artificial heart program at IMC

SALT LAKE CITY - The Artificial Heart Program at Intermountain Medical Center celebrated their 25th anniversary today, with hundreds of patients on hand.

"Some of my best friends are here now and they became my family," said Brent Haupt, a patient who had an artificial heart for seven months in 2015 before a donor became available.

Haupt is now healthy enough to hold his 20-month-old grandchild, and he's about to leave on a dream trip to Europe with his wife.

Hannah Schramm is only 21 years old, and she almost died when a virus attacked her heart last year.

"I was going to college I was going to do all these great things and it was just kind of ending," said Schramm of her feelings when she learned her heart was failing.

Today Schramm walks more than a mile a day and is planning to return to college.

They are two of more than 600 patients who have received artificial devices at the Intermountain Artificial Heart Program, which has pioneered the use of several of those devices over the years.