Mentorship for Those Whom the Operating Room Is No Longer Their Theater
One-third of active operating surgeons are over the age of 55. Mandatory retirement is not recommended, but technical and cognitive skills diminish significantly after the age of 65 and can begin albeit unnoticed earlier. The decision to stop operating is difficult. Individual competence and functional ability should be the limiting factors. Mentorship for the senior surgeon transitioning from operating to not operating but still able to contribute is a challenge. This transition can only be successfully accomplished by antecedent planning and definition of expectations. Without mentorship, the experience of a surgical lifetime will be lost to the next generation.
KeywordsSenior surgeon Mentorship Leadership Physical demands Options Transition
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