What do Clinical Physiologists do?
Clinical Physiologists are qualified healthcare professionals that specialise in testing, measuring, and reporting in the fields of cardiology, respiratory medicine and sleep. Some Clinical Physiologists are qualified in more than one field; however most focus on one discipline due the vast amount of knowledge that is required to excel a particular field.
They must hold a three-year Bachelor of Science degree and then go on to train as Clinical Physiologists. Their training is a long process, with much of it done on the job under the supervision of a qualified Clinical Physiologist in a particular field. Clinical Cardiac Physiologists must complete a Post Graduate Diploma in Cardiac Technology; Clinical Respiratory Physiologists must complete a Certified Respiratory Function Scientist qualification and Clinical Sleep Physiologists must complete a Post Graduate Diploma in Sleep Medicine. In addition to this, Clinical Physiologists must also undertake a competency programme involving completion of a workbook and successfully passing an exam. This takes a further two years. Clinical Physiologists are listed on the long term skill shortage list in New Zealand.
As it takes so long to train in this profession, it is paramount that we retain as many of our experienced professionals as possible. Unfortunately, many of our Clinical Physiologists travel overseas for better pay and working conditions.