Advocacy

Physician Anesthesiologists Week

EDUCATE

Physician anesthesiologists are guardians of patient safety, uniquely educated and trained for the critical moments in health care — in the operating room, in the delivery room, in the intensive care unit, and in a crisis. No other type of practitioner can match their ability to navigate life-and-death moments in patient care. Physician anesthesiologists are made for these moments.

As medical doctors, physician anesthesiologists specialize in anesthesia care, pain management, and critical care medicine, bringing the knowledge required to treat the entire body. Their education and training includes 12 to 14 years of education, including medical school, and 12,000 to 16,000 hours of clinical training to specialize in anesthesia care and pain control.1 Removing physician supervision from anesthesia in surgery lowers the standard of care and jeopardizes patients’ lives.

Say “Yes” to High-Quality Patient Care

Removing physician supervision from anesthesia care in surgery jeopardizes patient safety. A physician anesthesiologist’s education and training can mean the difference between life and death when a medical complication occurs.

In fact, physician anesthesiologists often prevent complications by using their diagnostic skills to evaluate a patient’s overall health, and identify and respond to underlying medical conditions. They evaluate, monitor, and supervise patient care before, during, and after surgery, delivering anesthesia, leading the Anesthesia Care Team, and ensuring optimal patient safety.

Nurse anesthetists are qualified members of an Anesthesia Care Team, but they can’t replace a physician and have about half the education and only 2,500 hours of clinical training.

THE FACTS:

Nurse anesthetists are trained to administer anesthesia, but do not have the medical education or clinical training to make critical decisions during surgery.

There are no independent studies that show nurses can ensure the same outcomes as physician anesthesiologists.

Recent research also shows that removing physician supervision does not increase patient access to surgery, procedures, or anesthesia care.3-6

Current laws in 45 states and the District of Columbia all require physician involvement for anesthesia care.

Nine in 10 surgeons consider physician anesthesiologists the most capable in diagnosing and treating complications during surgery.

Nine in 10 consumers believe that physician-led care improves health care, nearly half say empowering nurses leads to worse care.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) decided to maintain its patient-centered, physician-led model of anesthesia care where physicians and nurse anesthetists work together as a team.

Allowing nurses to administer anesthesia without physician supervision does not save patients or taxpayers money. Medicare, Medicaid, and most third-party insurers pay the same fees for anesthesia whether it is administered by a nurse anesthetist or physician anesthesiologist.

Eliminating the physician anesthesiologist can actually cost more, as other physicians may be needed to consult or provide the services a physician anesthesiologist would: assessing pre-existing conditions or handling emergencies and other medical issues before, during, and after medical procedures.

Physician Anesthesiologists Have Superior Education & Training
Some Things Just Don't Compare.

PA training

Be Part of the Conversation

 #PhysAnesWk22  #LSAPhysAnesWk22 #madeforthismoment

Inform your friends and family. Be apart of the Conversation. Contact LSA with your story. Post your personal story. Be sure to tag @lsahq and use our hashtags above.

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LEARN MORE

Physician Anesthesiologists are Made for Critical Moments in Patient Care Policymaker Brochure (pdf)

The brochure explains the importance of patient-centered, physician-led care and provides facts on the difference this makes in the quality of care. It compares the education and training of physician anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists and gives brief stories that some ASA members have shared on lives saved.


Education and Training Infographic (pdf)

Physician anesthesiologists have almost five times the hours of clinical training and nearly double the education of nurse anesthetists. There is no comparison. A nurse cannot replace a physician in the critical moments that matter most.  Who do you want protecting your life in an emergency?

Made for this Moment

The website educates patients about the specialty by highlighting the work physician anesthesiologists do every day to ensure they receive high quality care across all subspecialties within anesthesiology. There are a variety of resources that you can share with patients or policymakers – whether you are managing pain, preparing women for labor, helping children prepare for surgery, leading the anesthesia care team during heart surgery or brain surgery, or working in critical and ambulatory care on a wide range of procedures.

Proclamation

proclamation

My Story

Julie G. Broussard, MD, FASA

Julie Broussard- PAW

LSA would like to hear from you! We’d like for you to share your pictures, stories, and/or videos about why you chose to be a Physician Anesthesiologist. We will share this on our social media and web site.

Tell LSA Your Story



“When you are sound asleep, my mind is wide awake”

Julie G. Broussard, MD, FASA is a Physician Anesthesiologist and medical director of Anesthesiology for the Ochsner Lafayette General System in Acadiana. She began her career as a licensed pharmacist before pursuing a medical degree, and then specialized in the field of anesthesiology. Dr. Broussard has been board certified for nearly 15 years, and has been awarded the highest distinction in her society as a Fellow of the American Society of Anesthesiologists. This week we celebrate all physician anesthesiologists and Dr. Broussard tells us why she is made for this moment.

“Because of our years of education, training and experience, anesthesiologists were uniquely situated to help lead the efforts to coordinate care for critical Covid-19 patients. This role was definitely needed when so many of our nation’s intensive care units were filled to capacity. During the beginning of pandemic, I served my hospital and community by creating novel processes and protocols in a situation that no one had never encountered before. My goal was to ensure that each patient would get the individualized care they deserved, during a time when all types of resources were scarce. As anesthesiologists, we always have a plan, and a backup plan, and a backup to the backup plan. It was this type of thinking that was needed to prepare for the unpredictable surge of patients during different waves of this Crisis. As a physician anesthesiologist, I have detail-oriented, critical thinking skills as well as the ability to quickly adjust and try something different when necessary; I truly believe I was made for this moment.”

Advocacy

Grassroots Advocacy

Effective advocacy requires an integrated approach:  lobbying, grassroots engagement, public relations AND political campaign contributions.

LSA-PAC—LSA’s political action fund—allows LSA the ability to support candidates and/or elected officials who understand and champion critical anesthesiologist issues, and it is clear that LSA’s voice is growing in strength in the Capitol and with policymakers. But that underscores the importance of members ‘continued support.

We have a strong team of advocates in Baton Rouge who are working to protect LSA’s policy priorities and advance our political goals.

Through these battles and others, it is crucial that LSA has strong relationships with influential policy-makers. LSA’s advocacy efforts include delivering facts, earning trust, and telling our patients’ stories, but it is not enough. LSA-PAC is essential to our political engagement as well.

It is important we have 100% participation from all LSA leaders and members.

With your help, we can ensure LSA-PAC resources are at the level needed to be effective as we start looking immediately ahead to the next round of strategic political and policy decisions.