An Anaesthetist is a specialist doctor who has undergone advanced medical training in the specialty of Anaesthesia.
Having completed medical school and worked for a minimum of 2 years as a doctor, the Anaesthetist must then complete at least 5 further years of anaesthetic training. During that time your Anaesthetist is trained in all aspects of medicine related to patient care before, during and after surgery including pain management, resuscitation, the management of medical emergencies and intensive care. In addition, Anaesthetists may also study and have sub-speciality interests in specific areas such as Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Cardiac Anaesthesia.
All CAG Anaesthetists are registered with the Medical Board of Australia and the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA). Every Anaesthetist takes part in the continuing medical education program run by the College or equivalent, to ensure they remain up to date with the rapid changes in Anaesthesia and Medicine.
It is an Anaesthetist’s job to oversee your wellbeing throughout your procedure in the safest and most comfortable fashion.
You will meet your Anaesthetist prior to your procedure and discuss your past surgical and medical history as well as the important aspects of your upcoming care. Your Anaesthetist needs to understand your complete medical history to know which is the best anaesthetic medicine and anaesthetic procedure for you. Australia is the safest country in the world to undergo an anaesthetic. Nonetheless, every anaesthetic involves some risk and every procedure has a possibility of a complication. Your Anaesthetist will discuss the relevant risks with you.
During the operation Anaesthetists are responsible for administering the anaesthesia medications, fluids and pain relief, and monitoring your vital functions such as heart, lungs, kidneys and brain to ensure your safety throughout. Surgical procedures put significant stress on the body and without modern anaesthesia the majority of these procedures would not be possible. Anaesthetists also ensure you have a comfortable post-operative recovery.
ANZCA Patient Handout