ULM, student, Monroe native, Perfusionist program - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

ULM student and Monroe native accepted into "Perfusionist" program

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MONROE, La., (KNOE 8 News) - Faraun Pruitt, a senior kinesiology major from Monroe who graduated with the fall 2012 class on Dec. 8th, has been accepted into the prestigious perfusionist program at the Texas Heart Institute in Houston; he will begin his studies in January 2013.   

According to the Texas Heart Institute website, only about 16 applicants are accepted each year.

The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs defines a perfusionist as a professional who operates external circulation and auto-transfusion equipment during any medical situation where it is necessary to support or temporarily replace a patient's circulatory or respiratory function. A perfusionist is responsible—in consultation with a physician—for selecting the appropriate equipment and techniques to be used.         

"I had some wonderful experiences while doing my internship at St. Francis Medical Center," said Pruitt. "The medical staff was very helpful in incorporating me into each procedure. This internship was probably the defining factor on my acceptance into the Texas Heart Institute."

Perfusionists may be employed in hospitals, by surgeons, and as employees of a group practice. According to the American Society of Extra-Corporeal Technology, the average base salary for a recently graduated perfusionist is $60,000 to $75,000; for a certified perfusionist with two to five years of experience, $70,000 to $90,000; six to 10 years of experience, $80,000 to $200,000; and perfusionist managers, over $100,000.

Pruitt, looking to the future, said, "My career goals are to become a Certified Perfusion Technologist and practice for 20 years. During my final five years, I plan on teaching what I have learned."

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