Going Under Safely

Safe anesthesia is an important element in improving global surgery access, but trained anesthesia providers are in very short supply in low- and middle-income countries.

The lack of adequate equipment and drug options further hinders the practice of safe and effective anesthesia. But it is possible to carry out anesthetics safely in resource-limited settings, a new retrospective study of anesthetic procedures performed at Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) facilities from 2008 until 2014 demonstrates.

MSF humanitarian missions have developed a standardized set of essential equipment and medications to enable anesthesia care delivery and manage complications that could inform other efforts; the study authors advise providers to be flexible in their anesthesia practice and not too reliant on technology or drug variety.



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