So glad to hear that you are interested in this, and you are asking exactly the right question! Perfusionists are not doctors, but are a very important part of the care team for people who need heart surgery. As the other individual described below, you will need a college degree, preferably in one of the sciences, and likely some technical training with some observation in the operating room with a practicing perfusionist. Good luck!
Priya recommends the following next steps:
Great question and great to see your interest in helping patients. You don’t need to go to med school to become a perfusionist. There are special training programs that you can do. You will need a college degree (in a science discipline like biology or chemistry) followed by completion of a perfusionist training program. There is a lot of information on the web including links to schools. Do a Google search to begin. Good luck!
Ransi recommends the following next steps:
A perfusionist, also known as a perfusiologist or clinical perfusion scientist, is a healthcare professional who operates the cardiopulmonary bypass machine (heart–lung machine) during cardiac surgery and other surgeries that require cardiopulmonary bypass to manage the patient's physiological status.