The role of a clinical engineer within a mechanical circulatory support device program: a single center's experience

Prog Transplant. 2010 Jun;20(2):148-54. doi: 10.7182/prtr.20.2.b12407tk10t2jhw6.


With the rapidly growing world of mechanical circulatory support device programs, a variety of multidisciplinary team models have been successful. Most include nurses, nurse practitioners, perfusionists, and/or clinical engineers, with patient care and education primarily directed by nurses. At Aurora St Luke's Medical Center, the team includes transplant surgeons, transplant cardiologists, nurse practitioners, clinical engineers, perfusionists, and nurses who serve as transplant coordinators and research coordinators, but the team is unique in having clinical engineers at the center of patient care. The clinical engineers and the transplant coordinators split many of the duties of a typical ventricular assist device coordinator. The role of the clinical engineer within the program is elucidated by discussing the history of the program, the structure of the clinical engineering team, the duties related to mechanical circulatory support devices and the additional responsibilities of the clinical engineers.

MeSH terms

  • Biomedical Engineering*
  • Heart-Assist Devices*
  • Humans
  • Inservice Training
  • Patient Care Team / organization & administration*
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Perioperative Care
  • Professional Role*
  • Wisconsin