Obesity Leadership

As part of GPAS....every department should have a nominated individual with a specialist interest in obesity anaesthesia. This post holder should be able to act a source of information for the department, become a local leader to promote better care in all areas of their departments work. A key role is to be enthusiastic in distributing best practice and information to the whole department and critical care areas. No particular grade is required but this often falls to someone with regular exposure to obese cases. It does not necessarily fall to the oldest, or most experienced or local bariatric provider but the department should agree someone who can interact directly with SOBA and become this resource.

Many have already been fulfilling this role but find that the SPA allocation is removed or not recognised despite considerable workloads being delivered. Becoming a recognised 'SOBA Obesity Lead' will add credence and justification especialliy during job planning and appraisal.

Purpose of SOBA recognition:

  • SPA
  • National recognition
  • Local recognition
  • Peri-operative medicine

As a 'direct line' to SOBA you can consider accessing the resources to running local study days and obesity refresher courses locally. If you can host a National conference or wish to do so - please just get in touch.

Relevant Sections from GPAS chapter two

sub section

Guidance on the Provision of Anaesthesia Services for Pre-operative Assessment and Preparation 2016 :

  • 3.22 Every hospital should nominate an anaesthetic lead for obesity. (ref 35)
  • 3.23  Operating lists should include the patients’ weight and body mass index (BMI), and the World Health Organization(WHO) Surgical safety checklist36 should include obesity related issues such as correct equipment and manual handling. 
  • 3.24  Experienced anaesthetic and surgical staff should manage obese patients. Ideally morbidly obese patients should be pre-assessed by a senior anaesthetist.35 
  • 3.25  Additional specialised equipment is necessary and should be available for every morbidly obese patient at all stages of the pathway. Advance warning of these elective patients should be given to the appropriate department in the hospital by the pre-operative assessment team.35
  • 3.26  Patient dignity should be maintained by ensuring appropriate equipment and clothing is available and by staff attitudes to obesity. 

ref 35  Peri-operative management of the obese surgical patient. SOBA and AAGBI, London 2015 ( http:/bit.ly/1Pd78nr ) .