17 Feb 2014

'Historic' Pacific anaesthetists meeting to provide helping training

7:41 am on 17 February 2014

The largest ever meeting of Pacific anaesthetists will take place in Auckland later this week.

The three Pacific societies of anaesthesia from Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia are meeting ahead of a wider international congress, hosted by the New Zealand Society of Anaesthetists.

The President of the New Zealand Society of Anaesthetists, Dr Ted Hughes, who has worked in the Cook Islands and other Pacific nations, says it will be an historic meeting, with Pacific anaesthetists meeting with the New Zealand Medical Assistance Team.

He says some will be trained on using special ultrasound machines that make it safer to block an arm or leg, rather than give a full general anaesthetic.

"And they're going to meet up with these anaesthetists who run the hospitals in these far flung little islands and it's the first time they've ever able to meet up in one spot so we're hoping for a bit of synergy and quite a lot of teaching both ways about how to deal with situations in the islands in terms of a major emergency."

Dr Ted Hughes.