A Letter to ‘Surfers : The Missioneer


From Michael Parpard, RRT, CCP


Love your website !

I have been a Pediatric Perfusionist for 17 years, and just recently heard about your Circuit Surfers from a few friends that follow your website.

I have been going on Pediatric Mission trips almost my whole career, and even helped send Brian Forsberg on his first ICHF mission with Dr.Novick and Dr. Chris Gilbert ( babyheart.org ).

Trained & worked at the University of Miami ( worked there for 8 Years ), then worked at All Children’s & Tampa Childrens for 7 years.

Took 2 years off to travel full time as the Volunteer Chief Perfusionist of the ICHF, teaching and pumping Peds in 16 different countries.

Also, my good friend, Dr. Jeff Jacobs, and I took over a mission 6 years ago, going to Bustamante Children’s Hospital in Kingston, Jamaica.  Just finished mission # 6, and was able to use 4 of the new Medtronic Pixie Oxygenators on that trip.

I came back to the USA 18 months ago, and currently I am the Director of Perfusion at Tulane University in New Orleans, and would like to contribute to your Circuit Surfers site.

Please guide me in how I could contribute to your interesting web site ?

Thanks your new friend in NOLA,


Hi Michael …

First of all, thanks for the kind letter. It’s always nice to hear good stuff, (it’s better than the alternative), and it helps me think that maybe this nut is finally going to crack.

The hard exterior wall- of the perfusion community.

We are all so “on it” with our professional lives, sometimes we forget to be the people we started out as. Kindness and empathy are the basic essential ingredients, but taking that even further- the desire and ability to listen to each other- well that is huge…

And that was a defining factor, observed by others, of our character when we we interviewed for a slot in a perfusion class, for whatever program, somewhere, whenever. Our ability to listen and take input from others.


So anyway, regarding the question of “How can you help ?”…

Well you already have – by taking the time to talk about your very rich perfusion background and experiences. 

You really sound like a pioneer, and the fact that you and Brian know each other- says quite a BIT- as I hold Mr. Forsberg in very high esteem for his commitment and courage to go where others won’t.

Yeah I would love some help- or a monthly column about you and your life.  I don’t really care what it’s about- because clearly you are driven by your own spirit- and whatever you decide to write about would be great by me.

I very much appreciate the kind words AND the encouragement.

I guess if I had my wish it would be that more perfusionists from other countries feel free and comfortable to share their experiences. 

Sincerely yours,

Frank Aprile, BBA, LP, CCP

Do You Have A Mission ?

A New Approach

If you have a Medical Mission that you are planning…

I would like to offer up a newer and perhaps innovative approach to facilitating materials, supplies, and volunteer efforts.

Click HERE to see details …