There are interesting similarities and differences in clinical anesthesia practice and organization between the U.S. and Europe. A detailed analysis stratified for all European countries and the different regions of the U.S. is beyond the scope of this newsletter. However, since both authors have worked in public hospitals in both Switzerland and San Francisco, the comparison of pertinent practice variances will mainly focus on these two settings.

In most western European countries, the clinical anesthesiologist is more longitudinally involved in patient care. It starts with a heavy involvement in prehospital emergency medicine. Anesthesiologists are trained and available to go to the scene of an accident or medical emergency. In some systems, dispatch will activate them with the initial call and the anesthesiologist gets to the scene as part of the crew with the primary ambulance. Another approach has the...

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