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The ESAIC is dedicated to supporting professionals in anaesthesiology and intensive care by serving as the hub for development and dissemination of valuable educational, scientific, research, and networking resources.



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 2023

Newsletter September 2023: How safe is your Anaesthesiology department? A self-assessment/peer-review tool for enhancing Patient Safety

Andrew Smith

The ESAIC has been running the PRiPSAIC (Peer Review in Patient Safety in Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care. The project’s aim was to create a number of patient safety peer-review networks in 4 European countries, train participating anaesthesiologists in evaluating patient safety using the methodology and visit process used in the Helsinki Declaration implementation evaluation project (1) and thereby share knowledge and experience in patient safety. In April 2022, the project visited two hospitals in Scotland, where Dr David Mackay hosted a visit at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, a large teaching hospital in Glasgow and Dr Alvin Soosay hosted us at Forth Valley Hospital, a modern district general hospital some 30 km outside Glasgow. We were joined by Dr Aiste Urbonaite and Dr Gintarė Vitkutė, consultant and resident anaesthetist, respectively, at Kaunas Clinics, a university hospital in Kaunas, Lithuania. Also with us to see how the project worked were two UK trainees, Dr Mark Tan and Dr Claire Bond. The data collection process is shown in Box 1. In October 2022, the project visited Lithuania. Together with Dr Vilma Traškaité, Drs Urbonaite and Vitkuté hosted the visit at Kaunas Clinics, the visiting team included Dr Eija Junttila from Finland. The following day, Dr Liljia Paskalev was our host at Raseiniai Hospital, a district general hospital some 80km from Kaunas. From previous experience, we have emphasised to participating anaesthesiology departments, both before and during the visits, that PRiPSAIC is not an ‘inspection’; it is not a ‘test’ with correct and incorrect answers. Although a short report is produced for the host department summarising the visit, in our experience, the visiting team seldom uncovers any ‘surprises’. Participating departments are usually well aware of their safety strengths, but also areas for improvement. The PRiPSAIC visit provides an opportunity, which busy day-to-day clinical work may not allow, to create the time to use the simple, multi-faceted methodology to assess the formal safety processes such as protocols and checklists but also to explore the safety culture, and acknowledge and harness the existing experience and goodwill of staff.  

The programme continued with visits to Finland in December 2022. Here, Dr Petri Volmanen hosted us at Porvoo Hospital, a district general hospital some 60km from Helsinki, but administratively part of the Helsinki University Hospitals group. Dr Eija Junttila and Dr Maija-Liisa Kalliomäki were our hosts the following day at Tampere University Hospital—two colleagues from Moldova, Drs. Ghenadie Severin and Gheorghe Brânzǎ joined us for the Finnish visits in preparation for when the project moved to Moldova. It was satisfying to share one nation’s safety experience with another.  

In February 2023, the project visited, starting with the Oncological Institute in the capital, Chișinau, then Bâlți Hospital,  a large hospital some two hours’ drive from the capital in the north of the country. Our host in Chișinau was Dr Ruslan Baltaga, and it was a pleasure to see that some safety initiatives had been inspired by and introduced in the short time since our Moldovan colleagues had been to Finland. In Bâlți, Dr Gheorghe Brînza, who had joined us in Finland, organised our day and ensured we could see all relevant areas of the institution. In keeping with the peer review spirit of PRiPSAIC, several colleagues from Chișinau made the trip to Bâlți, including Drs Ruslan Baltaga, Ghenadie Severin, Ion Chesov and resident Dr Mihail Tiple. 


The project has been a success. Our vision for PRiPSAIC, namely allowing the exchange of knowledge, ideas and practice between anaesthesiology departments, within and between countries, is being realised. The ‘cascade’ approach, where anaesthesiologists visit different countries to learn the project methodology and share their ideas and experiences, brought its benefits. In addition, through the visits, interviews and completing the Safety Attitude Questionnaires, more than 500+  personnel were stimulated to think about safety​. We have laid the foundations for regional’ peer review networks’​ and gathered vital intelligence to improve and simplify the visit process (see Box 1 ). Feedback from participants has been overwhelmingly positive and is shown in Box 2.  

The main product of the PRiPSAIC project will be a peer review ‘toolkit’ based on the above process for anaesthetic departments to use independently or as they visit each other in the name of patient safety. This will take a modular form, so participating departments and networks can do as much or as little as they like, at their own pace, and be available free of charge on the ESAIC website in due course. Finally, we are especially pleased that trainees have been able to be part of this project, as they are the future of anaesthesiology and the more they can be involved with patient safety, the better.  

We thank all participating anaesthesiologists, their departments, hospitals and national anaesthesiology societies for making the project successful. 


1 https://www.esaic.org/uploads/2021/07/hd_8_final-report-evaluation-of-the-extent-of-implementation-of-the-helsinki-declaration-22-july-2020.pdf 

Box 1 ‘How safe is your anaesthetic department? The PRiPSAIC patient safety review process’ 

  • Collect documents and protocols relating to patient safety: This should include, as a minimum, those relating to the items listed in the Helsinki Declaration for Patient Safety in Anaesthesiology].
  • Complete the Annual Patient Safety Report using the template issued by the ESAIC*
  • Copy, distribute and follow up Safety Attitudes Questionnaires to about 30 anaesthetists and theatre staff  (This is an ‘industry standard’, 32-item questionnaire that asks staff to rate their agreement with statements about teamwork, communication, management, how errors are handled, etc.)
  • Find three staff to be interviewed during the visit (consultant, trainee anaesthetist and anaesthetic assistant/anaesthetic nurse) about their work, perceptions of safety, good practices, problems, etc. In our experience, staff often have many comments and ideas about safety in their workplace but are not always given the time or space to talk about these formally. The interviews usually last 30-45 minutes and provide this opportunity.
  • Plan timetable for visit day to include Initial meeting/review of material collected with visitor (1 hour), interviews (allow 1 hour each), plus observation and tour of theatres/ICU at times appropriate to observe activities of interest. This might include drug storage, equipment checking, the WHO surgical briefing and ‘time out’, handover from theatre to recovery/ICU, etc.

Box 2   Feedback from participants 

“Having the visit was a pleasure…..hearing the opinions of the visitors in terms of how things could be improved was eye-opening.” 

“The project gave us lots to think about and stimulated useful discussion and self-reflection.” 

“The visit showed what might be improved, but also what we can be proud of in patient safety.” 

“The trip was great, I have seen many good things I will implement in my hospital.” 

“I liked how inclusive the project was – seniors, nurses, residents and surgeons were all involved.” 

“Being involved with PRiPSAIC allowed many safety elements to be formalised…the sharing of experience between departments is extremely valuable and should be the norm.”