By: 18 April 2016
SAWW founder Roger Eltringham awarded for services to anaesthesiology

SAWW founder Roger Eltringham awarded for services to anaesthesiology

The founder of the charity Safe Anaesthesia Worldwide (SAWW) has been awarded the 2016 World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) Presidential Award for Service to Anaesthesiology.

Roger Eltringham founded Safe Anaesthesia Worldwide in 2012 to promote the delivery of anaesthesia in difficult situations by supplying equipment and supporting education and research.

The WFSA Presidential Award for Service to Anaesthesiology is awarded to individuals who have made a special contribution to the art and science of anaesthesiology or have helped promote or establish anaesthesia initiatives anywhere in the world. The recipient may also be someone who has served the WFSA with particular dedication but might not fit the criteria for the Distinguished Service Award.

Eltringham qualified in medicine at St Andrews University in 1964 and was appointed consultant anaesthetist in Gloucester in 1974. He was co-ordinator for the inaugural WFSA refresher course in Nairobi in 1987 and was subsequently appointed to the education committee, serving for eight years. In this position he organised or lectured at WFSA refresher courses in more than 40 countries. Eltringham was appointed to the executive committee of WFSA in 1996 and chairman of the publications committee where he edited the WFSA newsletter and introduced five language editions. He served as vice president from 2004 to 2008.

Eltringham’s focus on bringing affordable anaesthesia services to the world’s poorest countries led to the introduction of the Glostavent anaesthetic machine, an inexpensive, economical machine that can function in the absence of oxygen and electricity. The machine is now used in rural hospitals in 70 countries and a portable version is widely used by emergency services worldwide.

SAWW also received the runners-up prize in the 2016 AAGBI Innovation in Anaesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Award for work to develop a low-cost analgesia inhaler for use in low-resource settings. The prize was presented by anaesthetists Helen Makins and Lucy Miller at the AAGBI Winter Scientific meeting on 15 January in London.