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UHC and improved patient care through safe anesthesia – 71st PAHO Summit


Dr Carolina Haylock Loor Mauricio Vasco 2019 PAHO
Dr Mauricio Vasco and Dr Carolina Haylock Loor presented statements on behalf of the WFSA at PAHO

Why improving access to SAFE surgery and anaesthesia is vital to achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGS) and improving patient care was at the core of statements and recommendations made by WFSA at the 71 st Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) Summit.

Held from 30 Sept – 4 October, in Washington DC, the PAHO brought together ministries of health and health care leaders from 49 member states to discuss approaches and priorities to strengthening health care within the Pan-American region.

WFSA presented two statements to the main plenary which built on WFSA’s wider work of uniting anesthesiologists worldwide to improve access to quality anaesthesia and perioperative services to as a means of improving patient care and ultimately realising the SDGs.


Statement 4.8: Strategy and Plan of Action on Health Promotion within the Context of the Sustainable Development Goals 2019-2030

Presented Dr Mauricio Vasco, Chair of WFSA Obstetric Anesthesia Committee, Statement 4.8 highlighted the vital role that access to safe anaesthesia and surgery plays in achieving the SDG goal of Universal Health Coverage (UHC). This is evidenced by the unanimous adoption of World Health Assembly Resolution 68.15: Strengthening emergency and essential surgical care and anaesthesia as a component of universal health coverage.

The statement called on the PAHO committee to ensure safe anaesthesia and surgery were including in the SDGs discourse. Additionally it called on member states to promote National surgical, Obstetric and Anaesthesia Plans (NSOAPS) as part of their Health Promotion Strategies and plans of action.

Download Statement 4.8

4.10 Strategy and Plan of Action to Improve Quality of Care in Health Service Delivery 2020-2025

Presented by Dr Carolina Haylock Loor, a WFSA Council Member representative of Latin America, Statement 4.10 emphasized anaesthesiologist’s expertise in quality of care, safety of perioperative care and the impact on patient outcomes. Anaesthesiologists have a key role to play in designing and delivering plans of action that focus and improve on the quality of care provision within health systems. This was evidenced in May 2018 by the publication of the WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anaesthesia was published, providing guidance and for maintaining and improving the quality and safety of anaesthesia care.

The statement called on the members to include safe anaesthesia and safe surgery in the patient safety discourse through the promotion of the WHO-WFSA international standards and continue PAHOs commitment to WHA Resolution 68.15.

Download Statement 4.10

Embedding SAFE surgery and anaesthesia into Universal Health Coverage: WFSA at the UN

Dr Gunisha Kaur UNGA Sept 2019
WFSA representative Dr Gunisah Kaur

At the UN General Assembly last week governments committed to landmark agreement on Universal Health Coverage, pledging to help all people access health services. The commitment came in the form of a political statement on UHC which included reference to building essential surgery capacities as a means to reach the sustainable development goals.

The commitment was the product of the first UN High-level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage held in New York on 23 September.

Opening the meeting, General Assembly President Tijjani Muhammad-Bande emphasised that access to critical health services “must be a universal right and not a privilege”.

“We must ensure that nations around the world can benefit from each other in medical training, provision of medical infrastructure, among others, if we are to achieve our agreed SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals)".

Mr. Muhammad-Bande said the objective of UHC is to “strengthen our health systems” to guarantee a “healthier life for everyone” by ensuring that people have access to “affordable, preventive, curative and rehabilitative health services”.  

To realise quality health services the President called on member states to support each other with “integrated, efficient, safe and people-centred care”.

Patient care is a core component of anaesthesiology. Anaesthesiologists have a particular focus on quality of care, safety of perioperative care and the impact on patient outcomes. In May 2018, the WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anaesthesia was published, providing guidance and assistance to anaesthesia providers, anaesthesia national societies and other professional organizations, hospital and facility administrators, and governments for maintaining and improving the quality and safety of anaesthesia care.

The World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) were invited to the UNGA in its capacity as official liaison with the World Health Organisation. Representing WFSA at the High Level Meeting was Dr Gunisha Kaur, Assistant Professor of Anaesthesiology at Weill Cornell Medical College.

It is vital that expert-led organisations such as the WFSA are at the forefront of efforts to inform approaches seeking to ensure access to safe and affordable health care.

Dr Kaur continued, ‘It’s exciting that WHO’s commitment to the WHA Resolution 68.15 calling for the strengthening of essential surgical care and anaesthesia as a component of UHC, was so clearly echoed in the political declaration which came out of this meeting." 

That said 5 billion people still don’t have access to safe, timely affordable anaesthesia and surgery, so more needs to be done.”

To mark the High Level Meeting a special side event focusing on child health, surgical care and UHC was co-hosted by Smile Train and the G4 Alliance, two organisations - like WFSA -committed to promoting access to safe surgery and anaesthesia worldwide.

Further info



Applications now open: The 2020 WFSA/ IARS Clinical Research Fellowship in ‘Global Surgery and Anaesthesia in Africa’

The WFSA Education Committee, WFSA Scientific Affairs Committee, the International Anesthesia Research Society, Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine of the University of Cape Town and Discipline of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care of the University of KwaZulu-Natal are partnering to provide two Clinical Research Fellowships of one year duration in South Africa with support from the University of Western Ontario.

This opportunity is open to anaesthesiologists from African countries and the two positions available will be hosted at:

1. The Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine, Groote Schuur Hospital and the University of Cape Town


2. The Discipline of Anaesthesiology & Critical Care, Inkosi Albert Luthuli Hospital, University of KwaZulu-Natal.

The Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine, Groote Schuur Hospital and University of Cape Town and The Discipline of Anaesthesiology & Critical Care, Inkosi Albert Luthuli Hospital, University of KwaZulu-Natal, are tertiary institutions providing anaesthesia and critical care specialist training, and tertiary and quaternary healthcare provision. These Departments have strong clinical research programmes.

The aim of the fellowship programme is to develop the skills necessary to lead collaborative clinical research in Africa. The objective is that once the fellowship is complete, the fellow will return home with the necessary skills to establish and maintain collaborative research projects in their home country. The anticipated start date of the fellowship is February 3, 2020.

The fellowship will include the following:

Clinical Research Training:

1. Clinical research education:

• WFSA teaching modules and selected IARS education modules
• Remote training from the University of Western Ontario
• Small group research teaching at the University of Cape Town

2. Good clinical practice (GCP)

3. Project officer: The fellow will be a project officer for either one of the African or South African collaborative research projects. This would entail writing standard operating procedures (SOPs), site education and initiation, regulatory procedures (ethics applications etc.), data management and site visits.

4. Clinical investigator: The fellow will be a clinical investigator in some of the collaborative research projects running in the host department.

5. Diploma in Global Surgery: The fellow will complete the Diploma in Global Surgery at the University of Cape Town.

6. Clinical research publication: There will be opportunities for development and mentorship of the applicant’s own research project. The goal is for the fellow to present his/her work in a major anaesthesiology meeting and to publish at least one original paper in an indexed journal.

7. Potential to contribute to a research or policy initiative with the WHO EESC and one or more of its Collaborating Centres.

Clinical Anaesthesia training:

1. The fellow will be able to participate in the clinical anaesthesia educational activities of the Department.

2. The fellow may provide adult anaesthesia at Groote Schuur Hospital and its satellite hospitals (UCT), and Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital and its satellite hospitals (UKZN), provided the fellow has obtained the necessary regulatory approval from the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA).

3. The fellow will provide clinical care and research investigator activities in the preoperative anaesthesia clinic, which has a focus on perioperative medicine for low and middle-income countries.

Criteria for applicants:

To apply, applicants must fulfil ALL following criteria:

• Must be a national of an African country and currently working as a physician anaesthesiologist in that country
• Must be recognised as a physician anaesthesiologist in their home country
• Must be returning to their home country to a recognized post after the Fellowship

The applicant should preferably be:

• Working in a teaching hospital 
• Less than 40 years old

A successful applicant would also then need:

• UCT/ UKZN visiting international student registration
• Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) registration in order to undertake clinical duties
• Malpractice insurance
• Travel and medical insurance

How to apply:

Please complete the online application form here and provide all required supporting documents.

• Curriculum vitae with one recent photo and the names of two referees
• Letter of recommendation from your national anaesthesiology society
• Letter of recommendation from the Head of Department at your current workplace (hospital/institution)
• Scanned copy of your medical degree
• Scanned copy of your specialist qualification
• Scanned copy of passport

A selection panel comprising members of the WFSA Education Committee, WFSA Scientific Affairs Committee and the Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine, University of Cape Town and Discipline of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care of the University of KwaZulu-Natal will assess all applications. Shortlisted applicants may be required to participate in a video interview. The deadline for applications is the 31st October 2019 and successful applicants will be notified before the end of November 2019.

World Anaesthesia Day 2019 campaign

Join the WFSA's World Anaesthesia Day resuscitation campaign, joining with World Restart a Heart 

We are asking anaesthesiologists around the world to take part in our World Anaesthesia Day campaign on the 16th of October to showcase the role of anaesthesiologists in resuscitation.

Click here for social media toolkit

Kit de herramientas ahora disponible en Español

What is the campaign about? 

This year, the WFSA is joining with the International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR), the European Resuscitation Council and their World Restart a Heart Day campaign, to raise awareness about the crucial role of anaesthesiologists in resuscitation. The mottos for World Restart a Heart Day are “All citizens of the world can save a life!”, CHECK - CALL - COMPRESS, and “all that is needed is two hands.”

The WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anesthesia highly recommend that emergency resuscitation medication must be immediately available as well as other resuscitation equipment.


On the day - 16th October 2019

To take part in this campaign, simply print off the printable poster, fill it in with the name of your country, and take a video or photo of you and your team practising resuscitation. Then share this video or photo with us on social media using the hashtag #WorldAnaesthesiaDay.

Tweet and share your support with us at @WFSAorg.

You can also use the following hashtags: #WAD2019 #Resus #WorldRestartAHeart

Your printable poster:


Printable poster


 Send us photos and videos of you and your team, with the printed poster, doing some of the suggested actions below:

  • performing chest compressions to the music of ‘Stayin’ Alive’ by the Bee Gees, or to songs suggested in this Buzzfeed article;
  • practicing and having fun with airway equipment like an oxygen bag or with a resuscitation trolley;
  • practicing intubation.

Here are some example tweets you can tweet on the 16th October:

  • High-quality CPR enhances patient survival by three to four times #WorldAnaesthesiaDay #WorldRestartAHeart @WFSAorg
  • When a cardiac arrest happens that individual automatically becomes the sickest person in the whole hospital, needing more #patientcare #WorldAnaesthesiaDay #WorldRestartAHeart @WFSAorg

  • 18.6m preventable early deaths worldwide due to lack of safe, affordable anaesthesia care #SafeAnaesthesia & #SafeSurgery are essential to reducing death and disability worldwide. #WorldAnaesthesiaDay #WorldRestartAHeart @WFSAorg
  • Investing in #UHC makes financial sense: every $1 spent on essential #surgicalcare results in $10 return on investment #WorldAnaesthesiaDay #WorldRestartAHeart @WFSAorg
  • There cannot be #UHC without improving access to SAFE surgical services. Evidence shows there are critically low numbers of anaesthesia providers in many parts of the world. www.wfsahq.org/workforcemap @WFSAorg#WorldAnaesthesiaDay #WorldRestartAHeart





World Patient Safety Day - 17 September 2019

AAGBI NEW Logo World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists WFSA Logo PNG




 The Association of Anaesthetists and the World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) welcome the announcement of the first World Patient Safety Day on 17 September 2019. This new annual event, announced by the World Health Organisation at the 72nd World Health Assembly in Geneva, sets patient safety as a new global health priority. World Patient Safety Day provides a focus on improving safety standards and will help us further promote safe and high quality anaesthesia globally.

World Patient Safety Day offers a platform for improving global patient safety standards and can empower social movements demanding safer health care. Anticipated outcomes include the reduction in avoidable patient harm, preventable deaths, and more cost efficient and effective care.

Key Statistics

The WHO estimates that 134 million adverse events occur each year due to unsafe care in hospitals in low- and middle-income countries, contributing to 2.6 million deaths annually.

Analysis shows:

        5 out of the world’s 7 billion people do not have access to safe and affordable anaesthesia and surgical care. This astonishing neglect highlights the importance to work for improved patient care and access to safe anaesthesia. (Source: The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery (2015)
       The provision of essential and safe surgery and anaesthesia would avert 1.5 million deaths each year. (Source: Debas et al [eds.] (2015) Essential Surgery. Disease Control Priorities, third edition, volume 1.)
       Data reveals that the worldwide death rate during general anaesthesia is back on the rise, and is significantly higher in low income countries. (Source: https://www.wfsahq.org/anaesthesiology-facts)

With more than 230 million major surgeries occurring annually around the world, the stakes are high. In some countries:

       1 in 7 women die in childbirth. Lack of access to safe anaesthesia and surgery is a major contributing factor to high levels of maternal mortality. (Source: Cavallaro et al. (2013) Trends in caesarean delivery by country and wealth quintile: Bull WHO)
       Mothers in Africa are 50 times more likely to die following a caesarean delivery than they would if they lived in a high income country. (Source: Bishop et al. (2019) Maternal and neonatal outcomes after caesarean delivery in the African Surgical Outcomes. Study Lancet Glob Health 7: e513–22)

SAFE Courses

Death due solely to anaesthesia is extremely rare in the UK. This isn't the case for patients in lower-income countries. Often, anaesthetists in these countries work with basic equipment and no anaesthesia monitoring. Through SAFE (Safer Anaesthesia From Education), we improve patient safety in some of the most challenging environments by providing anaesthesia education and training. SAFE is a joint project developed since 2011 by the Association of Anaesthetists and the WFSA. So far over 4,000 anaesthesia providers have been trained in life-saving anaesthesia techniques. More information about the project is available here: https://anaesthetists.org/Home/International/Our-international-work/Safer-Anaesthesia-From-Education-SAFE

Current work and guidelines on patient safety and safe anaesthesia

The Association is committed to patient safety and safe anaesthesia. The Association has a Safety Committee and a Standards and Equipment committee providing expert opinion on safety and equipment issues. Since 1974, the Committees have made major contributions to anaesthesia safety. Working in partnership with other patient safety stakeholders, the committees produce clinical practice guidelines and standards, including learning from adverse events and poor patient outcome. This learning is promoted nationally in Patient Safety Updates by the Safe Anaesthesia Liaison Group.

Guidelines produced by the committees include:
·                  The introduction of standards of monitoring in anaesthesia
·                  Standards for obstetric anaesthesia
·                  Training of anaesthetic assistants
·                  Standards for checking anaesthetic equipment
·                  Publishing safety guidelines

To learn more about patient safety and safe anaesthesia visit the following websites:

SAFE-T Campaign 


WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anaesthesia

Safety Alerts

Patient Safety Updates


Speak up and team up for making anaesthesia care safe for all for World Patient Safety Day 2019

world patient safety dayAs of 2019, the 17th September has been designated as the World Patient Safety Day by the World Health Organization (WHO). On this day WHO will launch a global campaign to create awareness of patient safety and urge people to show their commitment for making healthcare safer. The aim is to raise global awareness about patient safety.

The World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) is the largest representative body and foremost alliance of anaesthesiologists around the world and is therefore in a unique position to make a difference.

One of its key areas of work is enhancing anaesthesia safety and quality of practice globally. It has an official liaison with WHO in working towards this goal. In 2018 WHO-WFSA collaborated and published the International Standards for Safe Practice of Anaesthesia.

Alongside advocacy, the WFSA also works towards this goal through its several other programmes such as SAFE Courses, SAFE-T campaign, sub-specialty Fellowship training and publishing free-to-access educational materials such as the peer-reviewed journal Updates in Anaesthesia, and Anaesthesia Tutorials of the Week.

Although anaesthesia safety has shown an improvement over the last decade there is still a significant global disparity. Anaesthesia related mortality is still much higher in low and middle-income countries (LMIC) compared to high-income countries

Reduction in LMIC mortality rates requires a concentrated effort on part of the global anaesthesia community. In many countries, particularly in parts of Africa and Asia, surgical and anaesthesia services are underdeveloped and pose a significant risk to patients. Problems that LMIC face include shortage, maldistribution, and migration of anaesthesia workforce, shortage of equipment and essential medications, inadequate physical infrastructure, as well as governance issues.

We need to emphasize the role of safe anaesthesia in health system planning in these countries in particular, in order to move towards global improvement of access to surgical care. We also need to focus on research into resource gaps in LMIC without which it will be difficult to bring about change.

The information on structural and process factors that contribute to unsafe care is mostly derived from high-income countries. Even in these countries, there are inequities in access to safe anaesthesia care, particularly for patients living in their rural and remote regions .This also needs to be addressed, particularly in the access of safe and timely anesthesia care. Large gaps in knowledge still need to be filled in order to find comprehensive solutions to global disparity. Collaboration and alliance among all countries for patient safety can certainly fill up these gaps to produce better outcomes.

Celebrating this day is a unique opportunity to advocate for anaesthesia safety on behalf of all patients. The slogan recommended by WHO for this year for World Patient Safety Day is “Speak up for Patient Safety”.

Let the anaesthesia community emphasize that access to safe anaesthesia care is a basic human right for all patients and: Speak up and team up for making anaesthesia care safe for all”.

 WFSA Safety and Quality of Practice Committee

 Further Resources


Faites-vous entendre et faites équipe pour rendre les soins d’anesthésie sûrs pour Tous pour la Journée mondiale de la sécurité des patients 2019

À compter de 2019, le 17 septembre a été désigné par l’organisation mondiale de la santé (OMS), Journée mondiale de la sécurité des patients. 1

Au cours de cette journée, l’OMS lancera une campagne mondiale de sensibilisation à la sécurité des patients et exhortez les gens à montrer leur engagement à rendre les soins de santé plus sûrs. L'objectif est de sensibiliser le monde entier à la sécurité des patients.

La Fédération mondiale des sociétés d'anesthésiologistes (WFSA) est la plus grande instance représentative et la plus importante alliance d'anesthésiologistes du monde entier. Elle est donc dans une position unique pour faire la différence. L’un de ses principaux domaines de travail est l’amélioration de la sécurité et de la qualité de la pratique de l’anesthésie au niveau mondial. 2

Elle est en liaison officielle avec l'OMS pour œuvrer dans ce sens. En 2018, l'OMS et la WFSA ont collaboré et publié les Normes internationales pour une pratique sécuritaire de l’anesthésie. 3

Parallèlement au plaidoyer, la WFSA s’emploie également à atteindre cet objectif par le biais de plusieurs autres programmes tels que SAFE Courses, la campagne SAFE-T, les bourses de formation de sous-spécialité et la publication de matériels éducatifs gratuits, tels que la revue à comité de lecture « Updates in Anesthesia » et tutoriels d'anesthésie de la semaine.

Bien que la sécurité de l'anesthésie ait montré une amélioration au cours de la dernière décennie, il existe encore une disparité mondiale significative. La mortalité liée à l'anesthésie est encore beaucoup plus élevée dans les pays à revenu faible et intermédiaire que dans les pays à revenu élevé. 4

La réduction des taux de mortalité dans les pays à revenu faible et intermédiaire nécessite un effort concentré de la part de la communauté mondiale de l'anesthésie. Dans de nombreux pays, en particulier dans certaines régions d’Afrique et d’Asie, les services de chirurgie et d’anesthésie sont sous-développés et présentent un risque important pour les patients. 5,6

Les problèmes auxquels sont confrontés les pays à revenu faible et intermédiaire comprennent la pénurie, la mauvaise répartition et la migration du personnel d’anesthésie, le manque d’équipements et de médicaments essentiels, une infrastructure inadéquate, ainsi que des problèmes de gouvernance. 7

Nous devons souligner le rôle important de l’anesthésie sans risque, dans la planification du système de santé dans ces pays en particulier, afin de progresser vers une amélioration globale de l’accès aux soins chirurgicaux. 8

Nous devons également nous concentrer sur la recherche en matière de pénuries de ressources dans les pays à faible revenu et à revenu intermédiaire, sans lesquels il sera difficile d’apporter des changements.

Les informations sur les facteurs structurels et facteurs liés aux processus, qui contribuent aux soins non sécuritaires, proviennent principalement des pays à revenu élevé. Même dans ces pays, l’accès à des soins d’anesthésie sans risque est inéquitable, en particulier pour les patients vivant dans des régions rurales et isolées. Ceci doit également être abordé, en particulier dans l’accès à des soins d’anesthésie sûrs et rapides. 

 Il reste encore à combler d'importantes lacunes dans les connaissances afin de trouver des solutions globales à la disparité mondiale. La collaboration et l'alliance entre tous les pays pour la sécurité des patients peuvent certainement combler ces lacunes et produire de meilleurs résultats.

Célébrer cette journée est une occasion unique de plaider, au nom de tous les patients, en faveur de la sécurité de l'anesthésie.

Le slogan recommandé par l'OMS cette année pour la Journée mondiale de la sécurité des patients est « Sécurité des patients : Faites-vous entendre ! ». Laissez la communauté de l'anesthésie souligner que l'accès à des soins d'anesthésie sûr est un droit humain fondamental pour tous les patients et : « Faites-vous entendre et faites équipe pour rendre les soins d’anesthésie sûrs pour Tous ».
Comité Sécurité et qualité des pratiques de la WFSA
Septembre 2019


  1. Gelb AW et al (2018) World Health Organization-World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WHO-WFSA) International Standards for Safe Practice of Anesthesia. Can J Anesth/J Can Anesth 2018; 65:698–708
  2. Bainbridge D, et al. (2012) Perioperative and anaesthetic-related mortality in developed and developing countries: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The Lancet; 380:1075–81
  3. Meghan P, et.al.(2019) Intraoperative Mortality in Malawi. Anesthesia & Analgesia: 128:1286-1291
  4. Sobhy S, et.al. (2016) Anesthesia related maternal mortality in low-income and middle-income countries: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The Lancet 4: e320-e327
  5. Walker IA, et.al(2014) Improving Anesthesia Safety in Low-Income Regions of the World. Curr Anesthesiol Rep; 4:90–99
  6. Khan F, Merry A. (2018) Improving Anesthesia Safety in Low-Resource Settings. Anesthesia & Analgesia 2018; 126:1312–1320.
  7. World Health Organization & World Alliance for Patient Safety. Research Priority Setting Working Group. (‎2008)‎. Summary of the evidence on patient safety : implications for research / Edited by Ashish Jha. World Health Organization

À propos de la WFSA

La WFSA réunit les anesthésiologistes pour améliorer les soins aux patients et leur permettre d'accéder à une anesthésie et à une médecine périopératoire sécurisées. Avec un réseau de centaines de milliers d’anesthésiologistes dans plus de 145 pays, la WFSA facilite l'apprentissage et promeut les normes les plus élevées en matière de soins des patients dans le monde. En savoir plus sur www.wfsahq.org | @wfsaorg

You can also access this statement in Arabic here.

The WFSA releases position statement on opioids

The WFSA is pleased to announce the publication of our Position Statement on Opioids, developed by the WFSA’s Pain Management Committee and approved by the Board.

This position statement acknowledges the dilemma between providing access for medication which has proven efficacy, while also potential harms to the public. Opioids are strong pain medications which can be easily abused. The dilemma with these powerful medications is to provide access for conditions where benefit has been demonstrated while protecting the public from the potential harms. This statement states that there should be engagement with patients and clinicians working in multiple medical fields including anaesthesiology, pain medicine, palliative medicine and primary care.

The position statement also draws attention to care in low- and middle-income countries where access to pain management is very limited and the use of opioids is extremely low. Because of a combination of a lack of availability, over-stringent and restrictive laws and a lack of awareness of how to use opioids. Conversely, there is a problem of opioid over-use in high-income countries, notably in North America. This over-use is a result in part to over-zealous prescribing of opioids to treat chronic non-cancer pain. This over and under prescribing needs to be addressed effectively.

“Although a few carefully selected patients may benefit, population-based studies provide limited evidence to support the use of opioids in chronic pain and clearly demonstrate the harm they can cause”.

You can read the full statement here.

The WFSA, as a non-state actor in official relations with the World Health Organisation (WHO), has presented statements to the WHO on access to medicines such as opioids and most recently at the World Health Assembly in May 2019. Here we stated that ‘opioids are essential medicines for the management of pain, and an indispensable element of UHC’.

Applications open: WFSA Scholarships for All Africa Anaesthesia Congress, 10th-12th October 2019, Marrakesh, Morocco

WFSA Industry Donors are generously providing sponsorship for young anaesthesiologists from Africa to attend the 7th All Africa Anaesthesia congress, 10th-12th October in Marrakesh, Morocco. The aim of the scholarship programme is to identify and develop future leaders in anaesthesiology. More information on the congress can be found here.

WFSA Scholars will acquire new knowledge and gain many contacts and friends during the AAAC. 

Scholarship criteria:

• Applicants must currently be working in Africa. Preference will be given to anaesthesiologists under 40.
• The application must be accompanied by a letter of recommendation from applicant's National Anaesthesiology Society.
• Preference will be given to applicants who will be presenting a paper or poster during the conference.
• Preference will also be given to applicants who have completed training within the last 10 years and are working in government or teaching hospitals.

How to Apply:

• The deadline for applications is the 23rd August 2019. In order to apply please use our online application system here to complete an application form and upload your two letters of recommendation and a copy of your passport.
• Applications will be considered by a panel of anaesthesiologists selected by the WFSA, and successful applicants will be informed before mid-September 2019.
• Successful applicants must confirm their intention to take up the scholarship within 2 days of notification. Failure to do so will result in the scholarship being offered to the next applicant.
• Applicants must be able to attend for the full duration of the congress.

Applications Open: 2020 WFSA BARTC Fellowship, Bangkok, Thailand

Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 General Anaesthesia Fellowship at the Bangkok Anaesthesia Regional Training Centre (BARTC). The fellowship is open to anaesthesiologists from Asian countries.

Trainees will study full time for 1 year in the Department of Anaesthesiology of the hospitals designated in the program. They will spend the first 6 months in a medical school hospital in Bangkok, and then 4 months in 2 provincial hospitals. The last month will be back to the medical school to prepare for and sit the final examination. The trainees will have hands-¬on training in the operating rooms, and will be allowed to take part in patient care.

This programme is taught in English, to enable the training of trainees from various countries, targeted for the Asian region. However, communication with Thai patients needs understanding of Thai language, and it is strongly encouraged that trainees try to get at least preliminary use of Thai language in their homeland, before leaving for Bangkok.

How to apply:

The trainee will have to submit documents in advance to prove that he/she has:

1. A permanent post in a government teaching hospital.
2. A degree in medicine.
3. Good spoken and written English language skills.
4. Prior experience in anaesthesia for at least 3 years in his/her own country (evidence of previous training, number of cases and techniques done in the last 3 years).

Applicants will be interviewed via telephone.

The fellowship will commence on 15 January 2020, and will last for 1 year. The closing deadline for applications is 5th September 2019.

The result of the selection will be announced on 30 September 2019 or sooner.

Download more fellowship information, as well as the application form here.

Please send completed application forms and direct any enquiries to the Programme Head:

Professor Jariya Lertakyamanee

Department of Anesthesiology
Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital,
Mahidol University, Bangkok 10700, Thailand

Fax 662-411-3256

E-mail: jariya130753@gmail.com

Ya está abierto el período para enviar aplicaciones para becas de entrenamiento en anestesia Pediátrica en Santiago, Chile, en el 2020

Se invita a enviar aplicaciones para dos becas de entrenamiento en anestesia pediátrica en el 2020 en el Hospital Luis Calvo Mackenna, Santiago, Chile.

La duración de cada beca es de seis meses. La primera iniciará el 1º de Abril de 2020 y la segunda empezará el 1º de Octubre de 2020.

Estas becas de entrenamiento están dirigidas a Anestesiólogos Latinoamericanos ya graduados (limitado a Bolivia, Brasil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Perú, Uruguay, Argentina y Ecuador debido a restricciones de la autoridad para reconocer el título de médico cirujano). Se dará preferencia a los anestesiólogos más jóvenes, a aquellos que trabajan en sitios de bajos recursos y a quienes estén trabajando en un hospital público y que estén involucrados en la enseñanza en anestesia.

Los aspirantes deberán cumplir los siguientes criterios:

• Su aplicación debe estar apoyada por su propia SOCIEDAD NACIONAL DE ANESTESIA
• Su aplicación debe estar apoyada por el Jefe / Director del Departamento / Servicio de Anestesia
• Debe demostrar que va a retornar a su país de origen a un cargo reconocido
• Debería estar trabajando en un Hospital Docente preferiblemente.

Las becas ofrecen fondos para costo de inscripción, alojamiento y gastos de subsistencia.

Para mas información, favor contactar a la directora del programa, Dra. Silvana Cavallieri, scavallierib@gmail.com, silvanacavallieri@gmail.com

Como aplicar:

La fecha de cierre del período de recepción de aplicaciones es el 31 de agosto de 2019. Los aspirantes que resulten seleccionados serán notificados a finales de septiembre.

Los aspirantes deben completar la aplicación en línea aquí y suministrar todos los documentos de la lista que aparece al final del formato de aplicación:

• Curriculum vitae con una foto reciente y los nombres de dos referencias personales
• Carta de recomendación de la SOCIEDAD NACIONAL DE ANESTESIA a la que pertenece el aspirante
• Carta de recomendación del Jefe de Departamento / Servicio o del Director del Hospital donde trabaja el aspirante
• Copia del título de médico
• Copia del título de especialista en Anestesia
• Copia de la página con la información y la foto del pasaporte

Los aspirantes que resulten seleccionados deben confirmar su intención de tomar la beca dentro de los dos (2) días siguientes a la notificación. El no hacerlo resultará en que la beca le será ofrecida al siguiente aspirante. Si usted tiene alguna pregunta, por favor envíe un email a la oficial de la WFSA, Dilly Hartley, projects2@wfsahq.org

Los aspirantes seleccionados deberán presentar también a las autoridades del Hospital Luis Calvo Mackenna los siguientes requisitos, los cuales son esenciales para realizar una rotación con práctica clínica en pacientes en cualquier hospital en Chile.

• El certificado de título de Médico Cirujano legalizado en el Consulado de Chile en el país de origen. Dicho documento se deberá presentar ya sea en el Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores de la República o en el Ministerio de Educación Chile, de acuerdo al país de origen (ver listado abajo), los cuales emitirán un certificado de “reconocimiento de título", documento que valida para realizar una rotación con actividad clínica. Dicho certificado deberá ser presentado en la Unidad de Capacitación y Docencia del Hospital Luis Calvo Mackenna. Para solicitar el certificado de reconocimiento de título, el interesado debe pedir una hora de atención, a través de la página en internet, del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores, (www.minrel.gob.cl), y en el caso del Ministerio de Educación (www.mineduc.gob.cl) debe tramitarlo directamente en sus oficinas.
• Copia del Título de Anestesiólogo debidamente legalizado en una notaría pública y autenticado en el Consulado de Chile en su país.
• Currículum vitae.
• Certificado de vacunación contra virus hepatitis B (VHB).
• Seguro de salud con cobertura por todo el periodo de entrenamiento

Países con convenios que deben legalizar ante el MINREL:

Bolivia, Brasil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Perú, Uruguay.

Países con convenios que deben legalizar en el MINEDUC:

Argentina y Ecuador

English Version

Applications now open for WFSA-CLASA Paediatric Anaesthesia Fellowship in Santiago, Chile, 2020

Applications are invited for two paediatric anaesthesia fellowship training positions in 2020 at the Luis Calvo Mackenna Hospital in Santiago, Chile.

The duration of each fellowship is 6 months. One will start on 1st April 2020 and the other will start on 1st October 2020.

The fellowships are intended for graduated Latin American anaesthesiologists (limited to Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Perú, Uruguay, Argentina and Ecuador due to authority restrictions on who can practice clinically in Chile) who are, ideally, working in a public hospital and involved in anaesthesia education. Preference will be given to younger anaesthesiologists and those working in low resource settings.

Applicants should fit the following criteria:

• Must be supported in their application by their own national anaesthesiology society
• Must be supported in their application by the chief / head of their home department
• Must be returning to their home country to a recognized post
• Should preferably be working in a teaching hospital

The fellowship offers funding for tuition costs, accommodation and subsistence living expenses.

For more information, please contact the programme head, Dr Silvana Cavallieri, scavallierib@gmail.com, silvanacavallieri@gmail.com

How to apply:

The closing date for applications is 31st August 2019. Successful applicants will be notified by late-September.

Applicants must complete the online application form here and provide all the documents listed at the end of the form:

• Curriculum vitae with one recent photo and the names of two referees
• Letter of recommendation from the applicant's national anaesthesiology society
• Letter of recommendation from the applicant's head of department or hospital management
• Copy of medical degree
• Copy of specialist anaesthetic qualification
• Copy of photograph page of passport

Successful applicants must confirm their intention to take up the scholarship within 2 days of notification. Failure to do so will result in the scholarship being offered to the next applicant. If you have any questions please email Projects Officer, Dilly Hartley, at WFSA: projects2@wfsahq.org

Successful applicants must also show to the Luis Calvo Mackenna's authorities the following requirements that are essential to perform a rotation with practice in patients in any hospital in Chile:

• Medical degree certification legalized at the Chilean Consulate in the country of origin. This document must be submitted either to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Chile, according to the country of origin (see the list of countries below), who will issue a certificate of title registration, which allows the realization of a clinical rotation. This certificate must be presented at the Teaching Training Unit of the Luis Calvo Mackenna Hospital. For this last process, the interested party should ask for an appointment through the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (http://www.minrel.gob.cl/), and in the case of Ministry of Education (www.mineduc.gob.cl), the process for legalization will be at its offices.

• Specialist anaesthetic qualification legalized at public notary and then at the Chilean Consulate in the country of origin.
• Curriculum vitae
• Valid certificate of vaccination against hepatitis B virus
• Health insurance for the whole period of the training.

Countries with agreement that must be legalized by MINREL:
Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, Uruguay.

Countries with agreement that must be legalized by MINEDUC:
Argentina y Ecuador

The WFSA represented anaesthesia at the 72nd World Health Assembly in Geneva

A delegation from the WFSA attended the 72nd World Health Assembly (WHA) which took place in Geneva from the 20th – 28th May 2019. The WFSA delegation comprised of Dr Jannicke Mellin-Olsen (President), Professor Adrian Gelb (Secretary), Dr Wayne Morriss (Director of Programmes), Dr Mauricio Vasco (Chair, WFSA’s Obstetrics Committee), Julian Gore-Booth (Chief Executive Officer), and Annabel Higgins (Advocacy and Communications Officer). This busy week is the WFSA main advocacy opportunity every year, and an opportunity as a non-State actor in official relations with the WHO to present statements, meet with WHO officials, country representatives and NGOs to promote safe anaesthesia.

WHA delegation edited for website rotated
This year's WHA opened with a speech from The Lancet Editor-in-Chief, Dr Richard Horton, who suggested 5 recommendations to the Assembly, including to “invest in safe surgery and anaesthesia” citing that 5 billion people remain without access to this. This theme was prominent throughout the Assembly, as the WFSA advocated for safe anaesthesia and surgery as a core component of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), including in the WFSA’s statements to the Assembly which we presented in our capacity as a non-State Actor in official relations with the WHO. Our statements were an opportunity to demonstrate how anaesthesia relates to many WHO areas of work, such as noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), patient safety, access to medicines and vaccines, and human resources for health.

On the first official day of the WHA, the WFSA co-hosted an event at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), along with the ICRC, the G4 Alliance, Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition, IntraHealth, and Lifebox. The event, ‘Surgery and Anaesthesia: conflict, poverty and development’, had 150 attendees and a wide variety of speakers, including country representatives, discussing safe anaesthesia in challenging contexts.

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The first session of the event features country and regional representatives discussing National Surgical Obstetric and Anaesthesia Plans (NSOAPs) and the provision of safe anaesthesia in their countries.   

Left to right, Dr Zainab Chaula, Tanzanian Permanent Secretary; Mr Ben Nangombe, Executive Director, Namibian Ministry of Health and Technical Chair, SADC; Tanzanian representative; Dr Chuong, Vice Director General of the Vietnamese Ministry of Health; Professor Sekelani Banda, Director of Training, Zambian Ministry of Health; Professor Emmanuel Makasa, Director, Wits Centre of Surgical Care for Primary Health & Sustainable Development. 



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 Dr Esperanza Martinez, Head of Health, ICRC, and Dr Ian Norton, Project Lead, Emergency Medical Teams, WHO, present during the second session of the event

The WFSA met with a number of country representatives from Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi and Myanmar, as well as Fiji, Vietnam and Palau, to discuss the challenges of providing safe anaesthesia and surgery in their countries, and how we can work with them and our Member Societies to help. This was a notable change to previous years, and is possibly a sign of that safe anaesthesia and safe surgery is becoming more recognised amongst member states.

In addition to these meetings with country representatives, the WFSA met with key WHO decision-makers to discuss the availability of vaccines and medicines, patient safety, nursing, infection prevention and trauma care.


Members of the WFSA delegation meet the WHO's Dr Teri Reynolds at the Palais des Nations to discuss NCDs. 

Alongside speakers from the WHO and former Lancet Commissioners, Professor Adrian Gelb presented on the topic of anaesthesia and the WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anesthesia at the WHO’s Technical Meeting on scaling up surgical, obstetric and anaesthesia care to strengthen health systems. The WFSA is proud to be the only NGO to be mentioned in the Progress Report from the WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros, ‘Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ by virtue of the WHO-WFSA International Standards for a Safe Practice of Anesthesia

There have been many positive outcomes from the 72nd WHA, such as the establishment of an annual World Patient Safety Day, to a resolution on emergency and trauma care (WHA Resolution 72.16) which you can read here. For the WFSA, this was an opportunity to build relationships and develop new partnerships to raise the profile of safe anaesthesia within the WHO. 



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