Where do anaesthetists work?

Preoperative assessment:

We aim to have every patient pre-assessed prior to the day of their elective surgery. Often this will involve an assessment with one of our highly trained nurses, but should it be required, you may also be assessed by one of our consultant anaesthetists. It is a good opportunity for you to discuss health issues that may be relevant during surgery. The pre-assessment clinic aims to highlight any issues that may be problematic during surgery and improve upon your preoperative health if that is possible within the timescale available. The pre-assessment team will frequently discuss issues with the anaesthetic consultant and surgical team caring for you during surgery. The process helps to prevent surprises on the day of surgery, with the aim of minimising cancelled operations and smooth running of the operating department for the good of the patients and the hospital.

Intraoperative care

We frequently care for patients undergoing major and high risk surgery. The Royal Free Hospital is a large tertiary referral teaching hospital and we frequently perform cases that would be unsuitably complex for other establishments. We pride ourselves on providing high quality intraoperative care to allow these complex operations to take place safely. The anaesthesia team are skilled in the use and interpretation of cutting edge monitoring modalities and state of the art equipment to improve intraoperative care.

Critical care and resuscitation

The Royal Free Hospital has a state-of-the-art 34 bedded intensive care unit, 14 intensive care consultants and in excess of 200 specially trained nurses. Here we provide expert care for the most critically ill patients in the hospital. Our patients come from a wide range of referral sources, post surgical patients, outside referrals, the wards and direct from A&E. We also provide support to the critical care outreach team who review unwell patients on the wards and provide the ward teams with expertise and support. We attend in-hospital life threatening emergencies to help in resuscitation attempts and to support colleagues managing deteriorating patients.

The critical care team has won acclaim for the management of patients in the high level isolation unit during the recent Ebola outbreak.

Pain management

Anaesthetists at the Royal Free London oversee the management of the acute and chronic pain services, helping to ensure optimum pain control for our patients.  The acute pain teams, including our specialist nurses, will routinely review many post operative patients, but also provide input into the management of medical patients with complex pain issues.

The chronic pain teams run clinics to review patients with longer term pain issues and also perform interventional procedures to help alleviate and manage long term pain.