Anaesthesia in Ethiopia: providers' perspectives on the current state of the service

12 Jun 2018

The improvement of surgical and anaesthetic safety in low-resource settings is hampered by a lack of reliable information on the current provision of these services. Ethiopia is one of the world's poorest countries and, despite large amounts of both foreign and domestic investment, still reports some of the worst health outcomes. However, information on anaesthesia and surgical provision is sparse. This work reproduces a questionnaire study, first used in Uganda in 2006, to survey practising anaesthetists regarding the current state of anaesthesia services across Ethiopia. The results indicate that a large proportion of centres remain unable to provide safe general, spinal, paediatric and obstetric anaesthesia, at all levels of hospital and across almost all of the country's regions. In addition to a lack of equipment and pharmaceuticals, anaesthetists report problems with professional recognition and a lack of access to continuing professional development as key barriers to service development.