NIAA eNewsletter: May 2013

Academic Trainees

Dr Ramani Moonesinghe

How the NIAA Can Help You

Dr Ramani Moonesinghe, Academic Trainee Coordinator for the NIAA, gave an inspiring talk to trainees at the AAGBI's GAT Annual Scientific Meeting on 4 April. Please click here to listen to her presentation in full.

South West Anaesthetic Research Matrix (SWARM)

Anaesthetic trainees in the South West of England have established a successful anaesthetic trainee-led audit and research collaborative. At present around 70 trainees are involved in the network which covers six Trusts within the deanery. The group has already completed a multi-centred prospective audit on post-operative pulmonary complications and the outcomes were presented at the ARS Winter Meeting in December 2012.
Please click here to find out more about this exciting trainee initiative.

NIAA Grants

GDT in theatre

COMPETE C and MIDAS fluid therapy trials

The COMPETE C and MIDAS fluid therapy trials exemplify the benefits of NIAA pump prime funding. NIAA grants allowed Dr Richard Struthers and Dr Gary Minto at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, to run these consecutive RCTs, recruiting 399 patients. The studies investigated the use of cardiac output monitors to achieve Goal Directed Fluid Therapy during major elective abdominal surgery. Prior to surgery, patients had been prospectively stratified into fit or unfit subgroups based on their performance on a cardiopulmonary exercise test. In 4 years since the first grant, the peri-operative research group at Derriford has supervised 3 MD students and numerous anaesthetic fellows on related projects.

Round 1 2013

The deadline for grant applications was Friday 19 April. All applications have been sent for peer review and the grant committee will meet on Thursday 4 July. Applicants will be contacted within one week of the meeting regarding their applications.

The John Snow Anaesthesia Intercalated BSc Award

This new initiative has been developed by the Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain & Ireland (AAGBI)/Anaesthesia and British Journal of Anaesthesia (BJA)/Royal College of Anaesthetists (RCoA) to provide some financial support to undergraduate medical students embarking on intercalated BSc projects. The deadline for applications was Tuesday 30 April and we aim to contact all applicants by the end of May with the reviewers' decisions.

Dr Rupert Pearse, March 2013

RCoA Awards and Prizes

The NIAA is advertising several small grants, awards and prizes funded by the RCoA for the purpose of supporting research. These include small travel and education grants, the Maurice Hudson Prize and the Macintosh Professorship. We are also advertising the Greaves, Kumar and Myerson Awards on behalf of the Society for Education in Anaesthesia UK (SEA UK). For further details please click here.


Introduction to Academic Anaesthesia

This two-day course is aimed at anaesthetists new to research and quality improvement. It will be held on 9-10 September at the London Deanery and will feature national experts in various areas of clinical research and quality improvement relevant to anaesthesia, provide an introduction to research methodology and how to get started and review the important studies which have been recently published. Click here for more details.

NIAA Research Week

The NIAA Research Week will run from Monday 30 September to Thursday 3 October and will include the BJA Research Methodology Workshops, a BJA Peer Reviewer Workshop, the ARS Winter Meeting and the 5th HSRC UK Peri-operative Care Research Forum. Click here for an outline programme. Delegates will be able to register to attend either part or all of the programme and further details will follow soon.

Airway Lead Day

The first Airway Lead Day will be held at the Royal College of Anaesthetists on Thursday 26 September. This event is aimed at Airway Leads and those aspiring to become Airway Leads. A programme will be available shortly on the HSRC website and will include what life is like as an Airway Lead, educational training, and a discussion forum.



The HSRC continues to establish a network of local Quality Audit and Research Coordinators (QuARCs) within every Trust to be a single point of contact for national audits, quality improvement projects, multicentre research and other academic issues. For more information, please visit the HSRC website. We are still missing details for a number of Trusts, so if you haven't yet confirmed the details for your QuARC, please do get in touch.

National Audit Projects


Data collection for the fifth National Audit Project on Accidental Awareness during General Anaesthesia is now drawing to a close. For more information and for details on how to report a case of AAGA, please visit the NAP website.

The results of the NAP5 baseline survey have been jointly published in the journals Anaesthesia, Vol 68, Issue 4, pgs 343-353, April 2013 and the British Journal of Anaesthesia (BJA), Vol 110 (4), pgs 501-509. The findings announce a low rate of patient awareness during anaesthesia and more details can be found here.


One of the key recommendations of the NAP4 report was that each Department of Anaesthesia should have a 'departmental airway lead'. This has been a long-standing recommendation of the Difficult Airway Society (DAS), and the Royal College of Anaesthetists' (RCoA) Council has now endorsed a strong recommendation that all departments should conform. The College is currently compiling a list of Department Airway Leads. An article with further details can be found in Issue 76 of the November Bulletin on the RCoA website. An indicative Airway Lead job description will shortly be available on the NAP4 web pages.

Airway Leads and anyone who would like to be an Airway Lead are welcome to attend the first Airway Lead Day at the RCoA on Thursday 26 September.

Call for proposals for NAP6

Thank you to everyone who submitted a proposal for the topic of the 6th National Audit Project. The topic will be announced on the HSRC, NAP and RCoA websites in due course. Following the announcement, the recruitment process for the appointment of a clinical lead for NAP6 will be confirmed.

NELA - National Emergency Laparotomy Audit

The National Emergency Laparotomy Audit (NELA) is part of the National Clinical Audit and Patient Outcomes Programme (NCAPOP), overseen by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP).

Since January 2013 155 Trusts/Local Health Boards in England and Wales have registered their interest in participating in the NELA. This accounts for 100% of all eligible acute trusts contacted by the project team. There are currently 180 hospital sites registered having submitted nominated leads for anaesthesia, surgery and clinical audit. The full details of some hospitals are still outstanding.

NELA will comprise of an Organisational Audit and a Patient Audit. The organisational audit questions are being finalised in preparation for the scheduled data collection dates of between June and September 2013. The first year of data collection for the Patient Audit is due to take place from 1st December 2013. The exact audit dataset and inclusion criteria are currently being clarified.

If your hospital performs this procedure and you want to check it is participating, would like to be kept up to date with latest developments or need further information please go to the NELA website.

Join the Anaesthesia Team

The Editorial Board of Anaesthesia is looking for new editors to join the current team. Please click here for details.

Applications are also invited for a one-year Fellowship attached to the Journal. Further details can be found here.