Congenital Heart Surgery Workforce: Where Are We Headed?
Brian Kogon, MD.
Advent Health Orlando, Orlando, FL, USA.
Objective(s): Numerous challenges exist within the congenital heart surgery workforce. The purpose of this presentation is to highlight the current issues.
Methods: Prior STS congenital workforce studies were reviewed. In addition, more recent workforce publications, as well as recent publications surrounding fellowship training were reviewed.
Results: There are approximately 200 congenital heart surgeons with an average age of 50 years and a male predominance of 95%. There is a mismatch between the anticipated number of 5-6 surgeons retiring per year, and the 12-15 ACGME fellowship trainees who graduate each year. 40% of currently practicing surgeons feel that there are too many surgeons in the workforce and much of the workforce is dissatisfied. 30% are performing fewer cases than are felt to be required to maintain skills and expertise, and 25% are performing non-congenital heart surgery in some fashion. Of new graduates, 97% felt that senior mentorship was extremely important, yet 30% thought it was poor or inadequate. Conclusions: There are too many surgeons in the congenital workforce. There is not enough cases per surgeon, not enough job satisfaction, not enough women in the field, not enough junior surgeon mentorship, and not enough change over the last many years. Changes need to be made in the training paradigm and in the workforce to insure future success of those currently in and those entering the field of congenital heart surgery.
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