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The ESAIC hosts the Euroanaesthesia and Focus Meeting congresses that serve as platforms for cutting-edge science and innovation in the field. These events bring together experts, foster networking, and facilitate knowledge exchange in anaesthesiology, intensive care, pain management, and perioperative medicine. Euroanaesthesia is one of the world’s largest and most influential scientific congresses for anaesthesia professionals. Held annually throughout Europe, our congress is a contemporary event geared towards education, knowledge exchange and innovation in anaesthesia, intensive care, pain and perioperative medicine, as well as a platform for immense international visibility for scientific research.


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The ESAIC's mission is to foster and provide exceptional training and educational opportunities. The ESAIC ensures the provision of robust and standardised examination and certification systems to support the professional development of anaesthesiologists and to ensure outstanding future doctors in the field of anaesthesiology and intensive care.



The ESAIC aims to advance patient outcomes and contribute to the progress of anaesthesiology and intensive care evidence-based practice through research. The ESAIC Clinical Trial Network (CTN), the Academic Contract Research Organisation (A-CRO), the Research Groups and Grants all contribute to the knowledge and clinical advances in the peri-operative setting.

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The ESAIC is actively involved as a consortium member in numerous EU funded projects. Together with healthcare leaders and practitioners, the ESAIC's involvement as an EU project partner is another way that it is improving patient outcomes and ensuring the best care for every patient.


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The ESAIC aims to promote the professional role of anaesthesiologists and intensive care physicians and enhance perioperative patient outcomes by focusing on quality of care and patient safety strategies. The Society is committed to implementing the Helsinki Declaration and leading patient safety projects.



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The ESAIC works in collaboration with industry, national societies, and specialist societies to promote advancements in anaesthesia and intensive care. The Industry Partnership offers visibility and engagement opportunities for industry participants with ESAIC members, facilitating understanding of specific needs in anaesthesiology and in intensive care. This partnership provides resources for education and avenues for collaborative projects enhancing science, education, and patient safety. The Specialist Societies contribute to high-quality educational opportunities for European anaesthesiologists and intensivists, fostering discussion and sharing, while the National Societies, through NASC, maintain standards, promote events and courses, and facilitate connections. All partnerships collectively drive dialogue, learning, and growth in the anaesthesiology and intensive care sector.



Guidelines play a crucial role in delivering evidence-based recommendations to healthcare professionals. Within the fields of anaesthesia and intensive care, guidelines are instrumental in standardizing clinical practices and enhancing patient outcomes. For many years, the ESAIC has served as a pivotal platform for facilitating continuous advancements, improving care standards and harmonising clinical management practices across Europe.



With over 40 years of publication history, the EJA (European Journal of Anaesthesiology) has established itself as a highly respected and influential journal in its field. It covers a wide range of topics related to anaesthesiology and intensive care medicine, including perioperative medicine, pain management, critical care, resuscitation, and patient safety.



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Newsletter 2024

Newsletter January 2024: ESAIC and BJA Join forces to shape guidelines for Neonatal Airway Management

Interview with Prof. Nicola Disma on addressing challenges and enhancing care for neonates and infants

Could you share insights into the key motivations behind the ESAIC and BJA joining forces to develop these guidelines? 

Over the past few years, we have conducted two Clinical Trial Networks named APRICOT and NECTARINE, both funded by the ESAIC. The main results from NECTARINE were published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia (BJA). Since the publication of NECTARINE’s main results, it became immediately clear the neonatal and infant population represents the most vulnerable segment within the entire paediatric population. They face the highest risk of critical events during anaesthesia, which could result in poor outcomes if not immediately recognised and adequately treated. Specifically, the occurrence of difficult intubation requiring multiple attempts of laryngoscopy or the use of advanced techniques occurs in more than 5% of neonates and young infants undergoing anaesthesia. The primary reason is associated with the distinct and unique physiology of the neonatal age and the frequent co-existence of co-morbidities and congenital abnormalities. Moreover, most of the recently published studies demonstrating advancements in airway management are conducted in the neonatal age.  

For all the above reasons, the Editor in Chief of the BJA proposed forming a task force to develop new neonatal and infant airway management guidelines. Twenty-three experts in paediatric airway management were invited to join the task force and tackle the challenge of developing these new guidelines. Subsequently, a formal proposal was submitted to the Guidelines Committee of the ESAIC, which was promptly approved. The ESAIC and BJA signed a joint agreement before the guidelines development process started.  

In your opinion, what are the most significant challenges healthcare providers face in neonatal airway management, and how do these guidelines address them? 

In 2003, Sir Dave Brailsford was appointed as the performance director of the British Cycling Team. He developed the theory of “the aggregation of marginal gains”*. Brailsford and his coaches initiated minor adjustments that one might expect from a professional cycling team. However, they didn’t stop there. Brailsford and his team continued to find 1%improvements in overlooked and unexpected areas. With hundreds of small improvements accumulated, the results surpassed anyone’s expectations. In just five years, the British Cycling team dominated the road and track cycling events at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and later at the Olympic Games in London, where they established nine Olympic and seven world records.  

Similar to the aggregation of marginal gains described above, the success rate of tracheal intubation in the neonatal age can improved by continuous small improvement in daily practice. The new guidelines address all aspects of tracheal intubation, from pre-anaesthesia assessment to the selection of devices and equipment, pharmacology treatment and the assessment of correctness of intubation. Both categories of expected and unexpected difficult intubation patients were taken into consideration. An extubation plan is also included. Finally, aspects such as non-technical skills and human factors were examined and included. The new guidelines serve as a comprehensive guide for physicians undertaking the challenge of neonatal tracheal intubation in the operating room. Achieving excellence in airway management is not solely possible by implementing the use of new devices like video laryngoscopy but rather by aggregating marginal gains in daily practice, including skills and competencies.  

Considering the collaborative nature of this effort, what impact do you envision these guidelines having on the broader medical community and, ultimately, on the well-being of neonates and infants? 

The ideal goal is to perform successful airway management with first-attempt intubation and no adverse events in 100% of neonates and infants. However, healthcare providers with other specialities perform neonatal tracheal intubation for various reasons in different settings. For this reason, the ESAIC-BJA guidelines aimed to focus on airway management in the operating room by anaesthesiologists. Every anaesthesiologist working in a paediatric setting and dealing with neonatal and infant practice can benefit from these guidelines. The advice is to read the guidelines, discuss with the team on an institutional level, and readapt to the local practice. Then, the team can work on implementing practices to improve performance where needed. The future challenge will be to work and produce “universal guidelines” applicable in all settings by all providers: anaesthesiologists, intensivists, emergency paediatricians, etc. The ultimate common intent is to provide the best possible medical care to all small patients needing airway management in the hospital setting, despite the different backgrounds of healthcare providers. Aspects like competencies, practice, simulation, and curriculum should be considered as an integral part of the future universal guidelines. The road is indicated; we need to take the first step.     

* The “Aggregation of Marginal Gains” theory, popularised by Sir Dave Brailsford, advocates achieving significant performance improvements by making small, incremental enhancements across various aspects rather than relying on a single revolutionary change. More information: https://champions-speakers.co.uk/news/ultimate-guide-marginal-gains 

Prof. Nicola Disma – Consultant Pediatric Anaesthetist, Head of the Unit for Research in Anaesthesia, IRCCS Istituto Giannina Gaslini, Genova, Italy

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