Khan F, Hassan S, Zaidi A.
Patients view of the anaesthetist in a developing country.
J Pak Med Assoc Jan ;49(1):4-7.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to assess patients regarding their knowledge and perception of the anaesthetists` role in patient care in a developing country. SETTING: The audit was conducted at the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi. METHODS: Two hundred surgical and 102 medical out-patients were included in the audit prospectively who filled a detailed questionnaire. RESULTS: Fifty-six percent of the patients knew that anaesthetists were medically qualified but only 20% and 27% had an idea about their role in the intraoperative and immediate postoperative period. 14.6% were aware of the anaesthetists role outside the operating room. No difference was observed between the two groups of patients except that a higher percentage of surgical patients were interested in having more information regarding anaesthesia and wanted to choose their anaesthetist if the need arose. Gender difference was observed in answer to two questions only. A higher percentage of males know the role of anaesthetist in the recovery room whereas a greater number of females who had surgery before remembered their anaesthetist postoperatively. CONCLUSION: The results of this audit show a poor perception of the anaesthetists role both inside and outside the operating room. Although public knowledge surveys have been carried out in developed countries there is a pressing need to repeat these in developing countries since the image as perceived by public may have a direct bearing on the recruitment of young doctors into an already shortage specialty in these less affluent countries.

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