Royal Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is the UK’s leading heart and lung hospital, treating around 50,000 patients each year. The Trust is currently rated 'outstanding' by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), from an inspection carried out in 2019. It became the first hospital Trust in the country to receive the top rating of 'outstanding' in each of the five main domains that the CQC assesses. 

Founded as a tuberculosis colony in 1918, Royal Papworth Hospital has established an international reputation for excellence in research and innovation.

Since carrying out the UK’s first successful heart transplant in 1979 and the world's first heart-lung and liver transplant in 1986, the hospital now performs more heart, heart-lung and lung transplants each year than any other UK centre. 

It also in 2015 became the first hospital in Europe to perform a pioneering type of heart transplant - donation after circulatory death (DCD) - and in 2022 performed its 100th DCD heart transplant, making it the biggest and most successful DCD heart transplant centre in the world. 

In addition to transplantation, Royal Papworth Hospital has the UK’s largest Respiratory Support and Sleep Centre (RSSC) and is one of five UK centres providing Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) to patients experiencing severe respiratory failure. It is also the only centre in the UK for a number of specialist services including Pulmonary Endarterectomy and Balloon Pulmonary Angioplasty (BPA).  

Royal Papworth Hospital is a member of Cambridge University Health Partners (CUHP), a partnership between one of the world's leading universities and three NHS Foundation Trusts. CUHP delivers world-class excellence in healthcare, research, clinical education and improves the health of people across Cambridgeshire, the East of England and nationally.

In 2017, the hospital was granted Royal status by Her Majesty the Queen in recognition of its commitment to excellence in cardiothoracic care.

Royal Papworth moved to a state-of-the-art building on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus in May 2019, which was officially opened by Her Majesty the Queen in July 2019. 

In October 2019, it became the first hospital Trust in the country to receive the top rating of 'outstanding' in each of the five main domains that the CQC assesses. 

In 2020/21, in collaboration with Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London, a new world-first heart transplant programme began, offering life-saving transplants to six young patients

Royal Papworth Hospital has been co-host of BBC Two medical documentary series 'Surgeons: At the Edge of Life' for series three in 2020 and series four in 2021, alongside neighbour hospital Addenbrooke's.

The new Heart and Lung Research Insistute, co-located on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, opened in July 2022. 

In spring 2023, the hospital became the first in the UK to use a new type of cutting-edge robot for thoracic surgery