Policymakers

When Seconds Count, Count on Physician-Led Care

Despite advances in medicine and patient safety, surgery and anesthesia are inherently dangerous. Physician anesthesiologists protect patients when seconds count.

These highly skilled medical experts are committed to patient safety and high-quality care. Removing physician supervision from anesthesia lowers the standard of care and jeopardizes patients’ lives.

Take action. Protect your constituents and all patients. Advocate for patient-centered, physician-led care.

On this page, you’ll find resources or links to information on:

  • An overview on the role of a physician anesthesiologist before, during and after surgery that highlights the facts on how this medical expert is critical for patients requiring anesthesia.
  • Personal stories from physicians and patients about the importance of having a physician anesthesiologist leading a patient’s anesthesia care and how their education, training and experience can mean the difference between life and death, when seconds count.
  • The gap in education and training between physician anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists. (PDF)
  • Research showing why nurse anesthetists cannot replace physician anesthesiologists, including studies that conclude the inclusion of physician anesthesiologists saves lives.
  • policymaker brochure that explains the importance of patient-centered, physician-led care and provides facts on the difference this makes in the quality of care.
  •  A training and education infographic that shows the differences in training and education between physician anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists.
  • Policy briefs by the ASA Committee on Health Policy Research (HPR).

Stephanie Arnold’s life was saved by two physician anesthesiologists when an emergency occurred during the birth of her son.

Hear more firsthand accounts from patients and physicians.