The idea of forming this society was conceived in 1993 at a meeting attended by a few select members of the anaesthesia fraternity at The Nairobi Hospital School of Nursing. During this meeting, it was felt that the anaesthetic fraternity in Kenya was growing in both numbers and specialities and its needs could not be adequately met by the regional body (Society of Anaesthesiologists of East Africa [SAEA] registered in 1975).
The Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists was registered as a society under the societies act (1968) on September 21st 1994. The KSA logo was designed by the son of Mr. Tubei who was one of the two senior clinical officer anaesthetists assisting the office of the head of department in preparing the work schedules and duty rota in the early 1980’s and 1990’s. The other senior clinical officer was Mr. Mwakodi. The two clinical officers played a major role in ensuring adequate anaesthetic coverage of the theatres and also mentorship of both postgraduate (MMed) and postbasic (RCO) anaesthesia trainees. The members’ needs considered when forming KSA were: Continuous Medical Education, Scientific Conferences and Social interactions. A steering committee, chaired by the late Dr. Phares Onyango Huma (R.I.P) was mandated to draft the constitution of the Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists (KSA). He, therefore, became the interim chairman of the yet-to-be-registered Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists. Before this, all Anaesthesiologists, Registered Clinical Officer (RCO) Anaesthetists and Nurse Anaesthetists in Kenya could only be members of The Society of Anaesthesiologists of East Africa (SAEA) which was affiliated to the World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA).
The Society of Anaesthesiologists of East Africa (SAEA) was registered under the societies act (1968) on October 24th 1975. Its first office bearers, who had applied for its registration in 1973, were: Chairman/(President): Dr. (Professor) E. M. Ayim (then Senior lecturer UON) Secretary: Dr. C.J. Coghlan (then Provincial Anaesthetist i/c, PGH-Nakuru) Treasurer: Dr. S. Ramrakha (Specialist Anaesthetist in Private practice) The chairmanship, Annual Scientific Conferences, Annual Refresher courses were held in the three East African countries (Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania) on a rotational basis. There was heavy presence of the WFSA in all the conferences during this period since the WFSA always sponsored the refresher courses. The objectives of the Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists were: To promote and encourage the science and art of anaesthesia in Kenya To arrange for and register meetings of the members of the society for scientific and social purposes To recommend desirable standards for training and practice in anaesthesia To establish liaison with bodies in other countries having similar interests. These objectives were similar to those of the Society of Anaesthesiologists of East Africa (SAEA)
Full membership: any qualified medical practitioner in full-time or part-time practice of anaesthesia who has paid a membership fee of KShs. 1,000/= and continues to pay annual subscription to the society. (Currently there is NO membership fee payable but the annual subscription was increased to KShs. 5,000/= through an amendment) Associate membership: any qualified medical doctors in anaesthetic training, RCO anaesthetists or RCO in anaesthetic training who has paid a membership fee set by the society members and paying annual subscription fees set by the society. Whereas full members are entitled to vote at the meetings, associate members are not; but are encouraged to contribute to the discussions and are allowed to select one representative to sit in the Executive Committee. Corporate membership: this group includes hospitals and drug companies and are expected to pay registration and annual subscription fees. Honorary members: these are appointed/nominated at the discretion of the Executive Committee. They are not entitled to vote or hold office and are not required to pay membership or annual subscription fees.
The first Annual Scientific Conference of the Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists was held at The Aga Khan Hospital lecture theatre in Nairobi in 1994. As the number of members grew, it became necessary to move the annual scientific conferences and refresher courses from hospital lecture theatres to hotels and convention centres. Whereas SAEA did not charge conference registration fees due to low cost of institutional scientific conference facilities and sponsorship by the WFSA, KSA found it necessary to charge registration fees once the venues for the annual conferences were moved to hotels and convention centres. It was Dr. Jane Kabutu and Dr. David Otieno who championed the society’s bold step to move its conferences away from confined lecture theatres in hospitals.
The Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists (KSA) was formally invited to join the WFSA in 2004 during the World Congress of Anaesthesiologists in Paris, France.
Kenya Society of Anaesthesiologists (KSA) successfully hosted the 4th All Africa Anaesthesia Congress in 2009 at The Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC). This was a landmark event in the East and Central African region with a heavy presence of both international and national faculties. It was attended by close to 1,000 delegates and faculty from several countries including USA, Australia, UK, South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Norway, Tanzania, Senegal, Cameroon, Benin, Mali, India, Egypt, Austria, Canada, Liberia, Germany, Uganda, Cote d’ ivoire, Italy, Mauritius, Rwanda, France, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Tunisia among others. There were 101 exhibitors in total.
Another major milestone was achieved in 2013 when KSA, through proceeds from conferences and fundraising by its members, acquired office space at the KMA Centre, Upperhill, Nairobi, Kenya, at a cost of KES 8,231,034 (Appx USD 80,000). The members made voluntary contributions ranging from KES. 10,000 – 100,000 each. Special contributions of KES. 300,000 each were made by Dr. Madhu Patel and Galaxy Pharmaceuticals Limited. Previously, KSA relied on individuals who used their private offices to accommodate the secretariat. Many KSA transactions were held informally in car parks and coffee shops. Indeed, at the inception of KSA, there was total reliance on the office of the head of Department of Anaesthesia at the Kenyatta National Hospital. This office provided pro bono administrative and secretarial services to the society.