Annual Report of the President


Annual Report of the President

Angela Enright


This has been a particularly busy
year for the WFSA. Much of the detail will be found in the Committee reports
but I would like to highlight some new initiatives.



A huge amount of time and effort has
been put into the Global Oximetry project resulting in the formation of a new
charity called  







This is the result of great
cooperation between the two founding societies – the WFSA and the Association
of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland, in conjunction with the Harvard
School of Public Health. The team is led by Dr Atul Gawande. The WFSA is
represented by Prof Alan Merry of New Zealand (Chair of WFSA Safety and Quality
of Practice Committee) and Dr Angela Enright of Canada (President WFSA). The
AAGBI is represented by Dr Iain Wilson (AAGBI President and Chair of WFSA
Publications Committee) and Dr Isabeau Walker (Member of WFSA Publications
Committee). Charitable status has been granted in the UK and is being sought in
the USA. The website is You can read all of the updates
and information about the project there. In short, a low cost, full service
pulse oximeter, designed to exacting standards for use in low resource
environments, is now available. Hospitals, governments and anesthesia providers
can buy the oximeters or donors can support the purchase of  oximeters for those in need. A full
package of educational material goes with every oximeter and is downloadable
from the Lifebox and WHO websites as well. The WFSA is organizing workshops on
oximetry at regional congresses and through its member societies. A campaign is
underway to publicize the availability of the oximeters and to ask indivudals
and Societies to donate oximeters to those who need them most.

In our efforts to promote safe
anesthesia for pregnant mothers, the WFSA Obstetric Committee has developed a
series of CD-ROMs with educational material for anesthesia providers. These are
available free of charge from the WFSA. We have been giving them out at
regional congresses. There have been many contributors to this exercise but it
could not have been accomplished without an unrestricted educational grant from
Baxter Inc. WFSA has also signed on to the UN Secretary General’s Call to
Action to Global Leaders in September 2010 to take action on Millennium
Development Goals 4 and 5. Other organizaitons which have also committed
resources are FIGO, Oxfam, CARE, Save the Children and others.

WSFA has instituted a new method
of allotting funding to its committees. Each committee is asked to submit
projects with a description of what the goals are, how they will be achieved
and the projected costs. This gives the active committees a chance at a larger
budget than previously. There have been excellent submissions but unfortunately
we have not been able to fund all of them. However we are funding more than
ever before and we hope to keep on doing so. One of the newly approved
projects, submitted by the Scientific Committee, is for the support of research
training for young anesthesiologists from low resource areas. It is very
difficult for these young people to obtain the kind of training they need in
research and we hope that, by giving them a start, they will become productive
researchers in their own departments. Application forms are available on the
WFSA website.

During 2010, pressure of work
forced our Treasurer, Dr HJ Fontenot of the USA, to resign. WFSA would like to
acknowledge Jerry’s years of service to the WFSA and to thank him for all his
contributions. We are fortunate that Dr Mark Lema, also from the USA, stepped
forward to take on this challenging role for the WFSA. The Management Group of
WFSA meets regularly by teleconference and face to face once per year. Because
of the high cost, the Executive Committee meets only every two years. At the
last meeting, which was held in London, we employed a whole new strategy of how
the meetings were run, with plenary sessions and then small group breakout
sessions to encourage more active discussion and participation. This change
resulted in a very effective meeting with contributions from everyone. We will
continue working on this type of strategy.

I have had the pleasure of meeting
many of you personally at Regional and National Society meetings. I have been
in North, South and Central America, Europe, Asia and Africa. I will catch up
with the Southern Hemisphere later on this year. The hospitality extended to me
on these visits has been phenomenal and I want to thank each and everyone of
you for your warmth and friendship. I will continue to try to visit as many
countries as possible. We will all have a chance to meet in Buenos Aires in
March 2012 at the 15th World Congress of Anaesthesiologists. The
Congress Organizing Committee from Argentina is working extremely hard to bring
you a fantastic conference. I hope you will reward their efforts by coming to
Buenos Aires. It will be a wonderful opportunity to reconnect with old friends
and to make new ones.


Nos vemos en Argentina! See you in



Dr Angela Enright


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