The practice of Intensive care is part of the responsibilities of a trained and qualified anaesthesiologist. From the beginning of Intensive care, it has been Anaesthesiologists, who have taken up the care of the critically ill patient. This is because the practice of critical care is most of the time an extension of anaesthesia, particularly when it concerns the high risk surgical patient, cardiac surgical patient and neuro surgical patient.
This has been the practice in Sri Lanka as well. Over 70% of the 93 ICUs in Sri Lanka are managed by Anaesthesiologists. However with Intensive care being recognised as a separate specialty in the UK and Europe and with Sri Lanka closely following the U.K. model, I am pleased that Board of study in Anaesthesiology, the PGIM and the College, have adopted those changes to Sri Lanka and were able to embark on a similar programme just one year after the U.K. commenced their programme.
The programme will allow those who have completed the MD in Anaesthesiology or Medicine to be further trained in Intensive Care, and be board certified as Intensivists. The programme has gained international recognition and our trainees have been accepted at prestigious hospitals in the U.K. for their training. As Intensive Care has been recognised as a separate specialty, there cannot be any compromises on the quality and the duration of training. The College of Anaesthesiologists and Intensivists as well as the board of study are very particular on this .
The Faculty of Critical Care, therefore has a crucial role to play in this transitional phase, where Sri Lanka is in the process of producing specialists in Intensive Care. The commencement of the FACCT.course (Fundamental Applications in Critical Care Therapy) the first of its kind in Sri Lanka, the preparation of guidelines, monitoring of standards in the ICUs in the country are some of the projects the faculty of critical care are involved in.
It is my belief that with the specialty of Intensive care developing in the country in parallel to the UK and Europe the faculty of critical care will have a major role in the development and sustenance of the specialty. I wish the Faculty of Critical Care Medicine of the College of Anaesthesiologists and Intensivists of Sri Lanka all success.