Committees  |   September 2013
Global Anesthesia-Related Mortality
Article Information
Airway Management / Infectious Disease / Patient Safety / Regional Anesthesia / Respiratory System / Quality Improvement / Committees
Committees   |   September 2013
Global Anesthesia-Related Mortality
ASA Monitor 09 2013, Vol.77, 66-67.
ASA Monitor 09 2013, Vol.77, 66-67.
Physician anesthesiologists are leaders in patient safety in the developed world. The technology, vigilance and protocols that our specialty embrace have saved countless lives in the O.R. and everywhere that sedation takes place. It would be easy to believe that this is normative. But in low-income countries across the globe, anesthesia-related mortality rates are shockingly high, and most of them occur in healthy patients (ASA Physical Status 1-2). Most of these patient deaths would be considered preventable in a higher-income environment.
This reality is not a global secret. In fact, the global anesthesia crisis has been reported before,1,2  but without action until recently. bNon-communicable and chronic diseases now eclipse infectious disease as factors contributing to global mortality rates.3  With this disease transition, the role of safe anesthesia and surgery has emerged as an important strategy for global health. This evolution in health care will require new global metrics to evaluate safety and demonstrate effectiveness. A quantitative, reliable, reproducible health indicator is needed – one that does not impose excessive costs on overburdened systems.
Submit a Comment
Submit A Comment

Contributors must reveal any conflict of interest. Comments are moderated.

Affiliation & Institution
I have a potential conflict of interest
Comment Title

This feature is available to Subscribers Only
ASA Member Login or Create an Account ×