Embattled Heart Surgeon Resigning From UK Healthcare

Jul 11, 2013

LEXINGTON, Ky. The heart surgeon at the center of a legal dispute between the University of Kentucky and its public radio station, WUKY, has announced his resignation.

Dr. Mark Plunkett is Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at UK Healthcare.
Dr. Mark Plunkett is Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at UK Healthcare.
Credit UK Healthcare

Dr. Mark Plunkett is Chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery, but that program has been temporarily put on hold pending an internal review. 

UK spokesman Jay Blanton says Plunkett has continued to operate on adult patients and according to campus records draws an annual salary of $700,000.  However, children needing chest surgery have been referred to out of state hospitals.  

WUKY and the Lexington Herald-Leader asked to see the mortality rates for the pediatric cardiothoracic program, but access to that data has so far been refused, despite an opinion by the Kentucky Attorney General.

The newspaper is reporting that Dr. Plunkett has accepted a job at the University of Florida.