- Monitoring of fundamental physiological variables during anaesthesia is essential.
- Clinical judgement will determine how long this monitoring should be continued following completion of anaesthesia.
- The Health Care Facility in which the procedure is being performed is responsible for provision of equipment for
anaesthesia and monitoring in good working condition on the advice of one or more designated specialist anaesthetists, and for effective maintenance of this equipment.
- Some or all of the recommendations in this document may need to be exceeded depending on the results of the patient assessment at the pre-anaesthesia consultation.
- Monitoring must always be used in conjunction with careful clinical observation by the anaesthetist as there are circumstances in which equipment may not detect unfavourable clinical developments.
- Visual and audible alarms must be appropriate and enabled at the commencement of anaesthesia by the anaesthetist.
There may be exceptional circumstances where this may not be achievable (eg. cardiopulmonary bypass surgery where the patient is rendered apnoeic and pulseless) but those alarms should be made operational as soon as practicable.
- The level of monitoring must be influenced by the nature of the
surgery undertaken, and to some extent by the quality of the service offered by the institution, and the availability of maintenance and service facilities. Referral hospitals are usually in large centres and must meet higher standards.
- The recommendations are intended to encourage quality patient care, but observing them cannot guarantee any specific patient outcome.
- Presence of the anaesthetist.