A Survey of nurses in the mechanical circulatory support programs in the United States. Heart & Lung: The Journal of Acute and Critical Care.

This purpose of this study was to examine the role of nurses working in mechanical circulatory support (MCS) programs in the United States through a description of role characteristics, including demographic information, qualifications, compensation, job preparation, work setting and responsibilities, scope of practice, contributions to patient care, and organizational outcomes.
Surveys were mailed to 189 nurses at 95 MCS programs, with a response rate of 63% (n = 119). However, 11% of respondents did not meet the inclusion criteria, and thus the final sample totaled 106 participants. Results showed descriptive statistics and an analysis of contents showed many similarities among the nurses, along with some differences in work characteristics, compensation, scope of practice, and other items. The findings in this first national survey illustrate the multifaceted roles and related skill sets required of registered professional/advanced practice nurses in America’s rapidly growing MCS programs. The common use of “ventricular assist device coordinator” as job title for these specialized and highly skilled nurses is incongruent with their role in these programs.