Sunday, 25 March 2007

Research: "Required reading for every Anesthesiologist"

The April issue of Anesthesiology has an editorial by Miller and Evers discussing Jerry Reves' 2006 Rovenstine lecture, on Research in Anesthesiology. It is described as "required reading for every anesthesiologist". It covers the problem of low research output of most departments of anesthesiology when compared to most other specialties (including surgery). However it is not all bad news. They point out that successful research departments do so by achieving a critical mass of research activity that fosters ongoing research activity.

They argue that we need a change in mission, commitment, and organization. It is only then that a reduction in major morbidity after anesthesia and surgery can be solved.


  1. I spent 6 years in academics twenty years ago, and recently considered a return. The U.S. academic world has changed so much; it is ALL about service to the hospital and surgeons. Late nights three times a week, spearation of research from clinical staff. US Anesthesia has become like cinderella; departments run by MD/MBAs rather than MD/Phd's. It's a shambles, and the more I talked to my old colleagues, the more I realized that they were more interested in joining me, than in having me come join them. There is a resurgence in resident applications, as avaricious kids are going into anesthetics as a way to do pain, which enjoys a five-fold income differential to giving anesthetics; it's all just a symptom of the distortion of for-profit healthcare in the US, which leaves fifty million un-insured. It won't fix until we have rational health care financing in the US, which makes millionaires (and billionaires) instead of care.

  2. That's a sobering commentary about where US Healthcare has gone. Worryingly, Australian Healthcare too is moving towards greater private sector growth, which has caused much debate. It will be interesting to see the response to Michael Moore's documentary 'Sicko' when it opens in Australia.