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The future of the profession

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Joined: Oct 26 2006
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  Quote terse Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Topic: The future of the profession
    Posted: Oct 26 2006 at 3:36pm
Hi, I've been doing some research on the perfusion field and think this is something I'd be really interested in. I'm just a bit worried about the future and outlook of the profession.
 
What I'd like to know is what do those of you currently practicing feel about the direction and the employment opportunities? I'd like to hear any experiences/stories/predictions. Thanks in advance
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  Quote sakertccp Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Oct 28 2006 at 10:58am
A few months ago I posted a summary of the results from the HEALTH CARE ADVISORY BOARD'S 2006 REPORT "THE FUTURE OF CARDIAC SURGERY". The HCAB is a prestigous organization that collects nationwide data from its member hospitals which comprise all the major academic centers as well as over 400 other hospitals across the nation. You can go on line at www.advisory.com to view the report if your hospital is a member. If not find a friend in a member hospital and have them obtain the report for you. The data and prediction was not positive for a secure future as a perfusionist. We who have been in the profession for some time have seen a significant decline in cases since 1999. This decline has been consistent and persistent. There are many reasons. Bottom line cardiology and medicine have many effective ways to treat CAD and surgery is becoming the last resort for select cases. Every time I post a new position, I receive over 60 applicants. From many new grads to the very experienced who have lost their positions due to loss of case loads. I would suggest you look into other healthcare fields such as a Cath Lab RCIS.
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  Quote alwin Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Oct 30 2006 at 7:38pm
I am curious about this data. I would certainly not dispute in any way it's validity because I have seen dramatic reductions in cases over the last three years and have seen exhorbidant numbers of applicants for few jobs for what seems like a very long time. My concern is that a great number of program directors would have no intention of any changes. Many that I have communicated with deny any issues whatsoever. I spoke with THI which is a 12 month training program and they believe there is high demand for perfusionists. I have also had feedback from probably five other programs with some of the same attitudes. I am sure that concerns of program viability relative to enrollment numbers effect these opinions. I do not think there is a definitive gloomy future but I do believe perfusionist productivity and staffing will be lower but there will be greater diversity, educational and skill requirements. What is needed to affect change in these programs?
Do they have to recieve absolutely no applicants before they would reduce? That likelihood for a twelve month program is nil. Why don't more perfusionists speak out about this? The communication pathways are readily accessible. It seems that your own livelihood is at stake.
 
A. Windler
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  Quote sprintermike Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: May 15 2007 at 11:00am

Although this post is old, I must agree that the future is questionable. There will definetly be room for SOME perfusionists, but not the number we have now. The baby boom wave may somewhat offset this trend, but it may take 10-20 years.

I find two points interesting...
1. The education programs are not "accountable" to the profession at all. They could double their number of grads and the profession would have no recouse as it is kind of a closed system (ie the schools are regulated by a group of school directors). However, THI had recently cut back their student number, partly because they didn't have the cases to allow everyone to do enough.
2. A lot of the perfusion schools are either private or in some way don't qualify for federal loans for students, so they are money starved. Of course, if you are an educator and your job looks shaky, just increase your student number and it doesn't matter if everyone can get jobs.
 
I have recently worked at 2 private groups and I don't know how they were making payroll. When we had a position open up, over 100 applications came in for it. WOW. When you see that, you know there is not really a high "demand" for new grads.
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  Quote sprintermike Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: May 15 2007 at 11:02am
To add, I think by 2010 we should have the goal of not having any "straight" CCP graduates. Every program should be required to be linked so the grads will be PA's, RN's, etc.
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  Quote Perfer Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Jun 21 2007 at 12:54pm
It seems that the only news that comes out about the profession of persusion is bad and it seems to get worse year after year.  The simple fact is that the perfusion job market is overly saturated with new grads and other out of work perfusionists who are willing to work for less and less.  All of this while open heart caseloads continue to decrease steadily and reliably year after year.  Perfusion groups are now having to struggle to expand their roles with other ancillary duties in order to justify their employment. 
 
A new grad will still be able to find a job, but the odds are it will require relocation.  As case loads decrease and perfusionists are working less and less, salaries will inevitably go down.  In short, I would not suggest anyone to consider pursuing a job in perfusion at this time, things are going to get worse before they get better.
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  Quote emmanuel Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Aug 12 2007 at 11:02pm
hi
 
pls suggest that is it really worth doing a Masters Program in Perfusion
 
Regards
Emmanuel
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  Quote racine Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Aug 30 2007 at 10:22pm
I have to say that the past few years have been the best the market has been since about 1991.   Those first 5 years of 1991-96 were very lean for those fresh grads with many opportunities having 50-100 candidates.  It was an employers market.  I personally feel the opportunites are somewhat better but not by much.  I too have spoken to a few program directors who feel the need and voice that to their colleagues; however, being on the front line shows other realities.   I have seen over the years the same similar employers willing to capitalize on this bonanza to keep the salaries low, competition high and thus job satisfaction on the side of lacking(how can anyone realistically live a satisfying lifestyle in San Francisco or LA or Phoenix or Denver working for $50K/yr?).  Many, many people have been fortunate to stay with the same employer through the years but what of those prone to whims of cardiologists?  I dare say many of our colleagues have had to relocate for purposes of job security, job satisfaction, financial priorities and to improve the quality of life.  I believe that as long as we have those mega corporations that insist on paying bottom dollar to the unfortunate crowd then we are subject to the whims of what the market will bear.   College degrees are most welcome but not always the criteria by what clinicians can be judged by.   Good perfusionists can be found on both sides of the isle.  I believe that the surest path to better success is pursuing a multi-specialty trained individual-at least in our field.   I guess if you look at Anesthesiologists, Pharmacists, Physical Therapies you will find a great job market with very beneficial salaries(why?  because of supply and demand).   I don't necessarily think schools just pump out people but the market does not seem to bear out that great demand for more and more perfusionists. 
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  Quote emmanuel Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Aug 31 2007 at 1:24pm
Thanks for the info racine.. Can u pls guide me to any of those other masters programs which have good benefits..
Emmanuel
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  Quote racine Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: Aug 31 2007 at 4:13pm
Emmanuel,
I'm not sure I would initially recommend a masters program for this field.  I would more recommend someone to cross train in other allied health fields like Physician Assistant, Nursing/CRNFA training, Pediatrics, etc.  if job security is of paramount priority.  Masters programs to me seem to be geared towards established clinicians in secure programs who seek management or post graduate teaching positions.   And really if you look at it, I can't say that those positions necessarily have good benefits?  That would be a matter of opinion.
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