The actress will depart the ABC series when production for the sixth season wraps later this spring. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Heigl claimed that cast members became like family during her six-year run on the show.
"They’re kind of family at this point," she said. "I spent more time with them over the past six years than I did with my own family. So I'm going to miss that."
The 31-year-old is purportedly leaving Grey's to focus on her family, specifically being a mum to her new daughter Naleigh.
Media reports have also suggested that she is departing the cast to further promote her film career.