Report of the 2015 Society of Thoracic Surgeons Congenital Heart Surgery Practice Survey

David L.S. Morales, Muhammad S. Khan, Joseph W. Turek, Reshma Biniwale, Christo I. Tchervenkov, Michele Rush, Jeffrey P. Jacobs, James S. Tweddell, Marshall L. Jacobs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Background The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Workforce on Congenital Heart Surgery (CHS) undertook a third subspecialty Practice Survey (2005, 2010, 2015) to obtain contemporary data. Methods A search for potential participants was conducted using multiple directories and websites. The survey instrument was widely distributed electronically. All surgeons listing congenital or pediatric cardiac surgery among interests were targeted. Results There were a total of 213 respondents: 177 (83%) were practicing congenital heart surgeons (median age 50 years; range, 34 to 80 years; 93% men), 9 (4%) were CHS trainees, 17 (8%) were retired congenital heart surgeons, and 10 (5%) were others. For practicing surgeons, mean duration of postgraduate training was 10 ± 2 years and 151 (85%) were CHS-board certified. Median practice duration for congenital heart surgeons was 15 years (less than 1 to 42 years). Work hours per week were greater than 70 for 74 (42%) surgeons, 103 (58%) work at a freestanding children's hospital, and 113 (64%) have full academic appointments. Caseload for 47 (27%) surgeons was less than 100 cases/year and 42 (24%) performed greater than 200 cases/year. For practicing surgeons, anticipated median retirement age was 66 years (range, 55 to 83 years), 31 (18%) estimated ≤5 years to retirement, and 163 (92%) were extremely or very satisfied in their career. Conclusions These data provide contemporary insights regarding the CHS workforce in North America and should help facilitate rational plans to address the needs of an expanding patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)622-628
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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