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Pediatric Council Update:
Who the Heck Cares?

PEDS Council Chair

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When asked to write the ISHLT Pediatric Council update, I wondered, "Who reads this update anyway?" So, I requested a few statistics from Susie Newton about the Pediatric Council Membership (as of September 2012). If the numbers herein seem awry, then now is the time to check your listing in the Membership Directory and/or encourage your colleagues to join the Society.

The ISHLT has a total membership of 2517, of whom 272 (11%) are members of the Pediatric Council. Surgeons dominate the Pediatric Council by comprising the largest professional category, 102 to be exact. Cardiologists outnumber pulmonologists 5:1 (85 cardiologists vs. 18 pulmonologists). However, lest we derive importance from numbers, we need to remember that value lies in the common goals of advancing pediatric research and optimizing care for infants and children with life-threatening cardiopulmonary disease. Namely, the remainder of the professional classifications within our Pediatric Council are few but invaluable in caring for our patients and fostering research related to solid organ transplantation in children. These include 16 transplant coordinators/nurses, 8 researchers, 7 anesthesiologists, 3 immunologists, 2 pathologists, 2 pharmacists, 1 infectious disease specialist, and 1 perfusionist.

We have broad geographic representation including 5 members from South/Central America, 8 from Australia, 19 from Asia, 44 from Europe, and 197 from North America.

The Pediatric Council provides a unique forum for discussion and collaboration with our international colleagues. The Council is not only fortunate to have the care of the young patient as its mission but also the development of young physicians, scientists, and nurses as a goal. Among our membership are at least 59 members who identify themselves as Junior Faculty or Trainees. It is wonderful to see these Junior Faculty and Trainees presenting their research and becoming involved on Workforces within the Pediatric Council.

Interestingly, I also found out that the Pediatric Council update (Who's On First: Pediatric Transplant Council Report) in the June Links Newsletter was the second most viewed Council page among the 11 Councils. So for all of the readers out there, here is the list of Top 6 Things You Should Know as a Pediatric Council Member:

  • 1. Abstract deadline for ISHLT 2013: November 16 at 11:59 PM (EASTERN STANDARD TIME)
  • 2. Look for Pediatric Council Workforce minutes now posted on the Council website to see what is happening and how you can be involved
  • 3. Noteworthy news for the Lung enthusiasts:
  • The new Pediatric Lung Monograph will be debuting in 2013 so clear off some room for it on your bookshelf.
  • The Registries & Databases Pediatric Workforce (led by Dr. Scott Auerbach) is working with Dr. Jackson Wong and the ISHLT Registries & Databases Committee to better capture MCS as a bridge to lung transplantation in the ISHLT Registry. Stay tuned for more information on this.
  • 4. Transplant Registry Early Career Award ($5000) application period opens on November 1st 2012 and the deadline is February 1st, 2013.
  • 5. Election for Vice Chair of the Pediatric Council will occur in March of 2013
  • Dr. Marc Schecter will move from the Vice Chair position to Chair as my term ends in April
  • Email your candidacy for Vice Chair to Susie Newton ( by Friday, February 22, 2013.

There are several other ideas and projects within the Workforces that did not make the "Top 6" list for this issue. Suffice it to say, it is an exciting time to be a part of the ISHLT and the Pediatric Council. There is a lot of work to be accomplished with respect to developing the pediatric thoracic transplant core competencies, updating pediatric heart failure guidelines, launching of PediMACS for pediatric patients supported by mechanical circulatory devices, and exploring options for capturing important data related to mechanical lung support as well as donation after circulatory death. We need to work together as a Pediatric Thoracic Organ Transplant community in order to effect change, and the ISHLT provides an important platform for our collaborations, efforts, and goals.

Disclosure Statement: The author has no conflicts of interest to disclose.