ANZCA Foundation Update: November 2022

11 November 2022

New this month: Making a difference through the foundation - subscriptions 2023; Foundation forum in WA; new research grants for 2023; funding for environment and professional practice research; new global development and indigenous health projects funded.

Making a difference through the foundation – subscriptions 2023

The subscriptions process is about to commence for 2023. By simply adding a foundation donation to your subscription payment, you can provide very cost-effective support for anaesthetists and  pain medicine physicians playing leading roles in research and education, improving science, practice and patient outcomes across anaesthesia, perioperative medicine and pain medicine.
Almost all this foundation-supported, world leading work in innovative research and education in our specialties is philanthropic; delivered by our fellows and trainees through dedication, passion, and unpaid additional work. A great deal of it is only possible because of ANZCA Foundation grants that cover the basic project costs, with no remuneration to investigators or educators.
Please consider making a donation with your 2023 subscription, to help advance the specialties and leadership in improving knowledge, evidence and outcomes across perioperative medicine. 
If you are already a valued foundation patron, please continue your annual support. If not, please consider joining as a new patron - the foundation would welcome your ongoing support!   

Foundation forum in WA: Reducing perioperative complications

Saturday 15 October saw the foundation’s first ever dinner forum, held at the Royal Perth Yacht Club in Perth, WA, to discuss the need to reduce perioperative complications as a national health priority.
Over 110 guests attended including ANZCA and FPM fellows, a strong contingent of prominent perioperative medicine specialists, senior healthcare leaders from the WA public and private hospital and healthcare sector, and several non-medical people with strong interests in improving healthcare and patient outcomes through internationally relevant high-quality research.
The forum highlighted the important role already being played by ANZCA-sponsored (via ANZCA grants and the Clinical Trials Network) anaesthetist and pain specialist researchers in this area, their strong track record of influencing improved clinical practice.
The speakers shared examples of current and completed world-leading ANZCA-sponsored research studies and major clinical trials, illustrating the potential to make even greater contributions to improving patient outcomes, depending on increased funding support and collaboration.
Speakers included ANZCA vice-president Professor David Story, Past President and Research Committee Chair Professor David A Scott, Professor Britta Regli-Von Ungern Sternberg (Perth Children’s Hospital), Professor Tomas Corcoran (Royal Perth Hospital), and Associate Professor Lis Evered (Weill Cornell Medicine, New York).  
The foundation thanks all its generous table sponsors and donors at the event, particularly our Platinum Sponsor St John of God Healthcare. We look forward to future discussions with attendees around opportunities to financially support the vital work of ANZCA researchers and their teams.

New research grants for 2023

A total of 54 applications were received for ANZCA Foundation research grants in 2023, including:

  • 36 Project Grant applications (8 with scholarships) – including one simulation/education grant.
  • 2 Lennard Travers Professorship applications.
  • 4 Novice Investigator Grant applications.
  • 4 Academic Enhancement Grant applications.
  • 6 Patrons Emerging Investigator Grant applications (2 with scholarship).
  • 1 Skantha Vallipuram Research Scholarship application.
  • 1 Environment and Sustainability Research grant application.

The Research Committee met on 2 September to assess applications, the final step in its peer-review process. 25 (46%) applications were successful. $1.55 million was awarded for new grants.

New named grants awarded

The new Patricia Mackay ANZCA Research Award, focusing on patient safety, and the Patrons Emerging Investigator Grant, designed to provide a larger grant opportunity for emerging investigators, were awarded for the first time. The Skantha Vallipuram ANZCA Research Scholarship was awarded for just the second time.
These named awards are in addition to the many other named research awards conferred once again by the committee.
The full details of all successful applicants, their exciting research projects, objectives and potential benefits, and all ANZCA Foundation named research awards will again be featured in the summer edition of the ANZCA Bulletin, and on the ANZCA website.
The article and the website will also outline details of all the generous foundation benefactors whose ongoing financial support makes it possible to bestow the foundation’s prestigious named research awards each year. It will also acknowledge all other donors in who kindly contributed during 2022.

Significant new patrons

The foundation warmly welcomes and thanks our newest Governor Patron, Dr Stan Tay, and our newest Life Patron, Dr Lahiru Amaratunge.

Dr Tay has made an extremely generous pledge to donate $100,000 to the foundation over three years, rendering him the foundation’s newest ‘Governor Patron’ (Governor status requires either a pledge to donate $100,000 or more over a period of up to five years, or cumulative giving of $100,000 or more). Dr Tay’s support will be directed to assist the foundation in supporting innovation in anaesthesia and perioperative medicine.
Dr Amaratunge, who has made a generous commitment of $25,000 to the foundation making him a Life Patron, has directed his first donation of $5,000 to the foundation for the World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists’ ‘Fund-a-Fellow’ program.

Dr Amaratunge and Dr Tay, from Melbourne’s Western Health, developed the very popular online learning website ‘The Anaesthesia Collective’, and the YouTube channel ‘ABCs of Anaesthesia’. The platforms deliver educational material and share knowledge and practical tips in anaesthesia.

Dr Amaratunge started ABCs of Anaesthesia initially to help trainees in their first few weeks of training by delivering early morning tutorials for residents in the basics of anaesthesia. Since then, the program has developed from interactive lectures and exam coaching sessions to also include a Facebook page and heavily subscribed YouTube channel.
The vision is to improve education and share resources with an international audience, while donating all income generated to reputable charities to support the disadvantaged and increase opportunities.

Calling and thanking all foundation patrons

If you are a foundation patron at any level, thank you – you are a premium foundation supporter, and we are so grateful for your annual giving commitment which is essential to sustain the work we support. If your patrons gift for this year is due, please add it when you renew your subscription – it’s an easy way to keep up to date!

Environment and sustainability grant news: funding to increase

Thanks to our generous environmentally-focussed donors, the foundation offered the new $15,000 ANZCA Environment and Sustainability Grant (ESG) for the first time in 2022; an important initiative for encouraging research into understanding and reducing the environmental impact of anaesthesia.
Unfortunately, an application with a sufficiently high Research Committee score was not received. The committee strongly encourages all unsuccessful applicants to refine and resubmit their applications, as success often comes on second or third attempts. 
The foundation and the Research Committee also strongly encourage new applicants for this grant in the next ANZCA grant round which opens for applications on 1 December 2022. Applicants should note that as an additional incentive, the next grant will offer increased funding of up to $25,000.
Any application that does not secure the ESG will also now have a second chance to be funded, by also being considered within the ANZCA Project Grant category, increasing the chances of success.

Guaranteed ANZCA funding for professional practice research   

To encourage high-quality grant applications for professional practice research (PPR) projects, the Research Committee recently approved guaranteed grant funding for the top two most highly-ranked PPR grant applications received.
Provided these two applications are above the minimum committee score required for consideration, funding will be guaranteed. If available funding is exhausted before grants can be allocated to all fundable project grant applications, as often occurs, these two applications will be funded even if there are more highly-ranked project grant applications yet to be funded.
This reflects the importance of ensuring that professional practice research is strongly represented in ANZCA research grants, as a vital input for ongoing improvement in patient outcomes as well as for leading-edge specialist training and education.
PPR grants are a part of the ANZCA Project Grants category. Eligible projects are those advancing any of the professional practice domains of communicator, collaborator, manager, scholar, health advocate and professional in anaesthesia, perioperative and pain medicine. These often involve mixed-methods, including qualitative research.
PPR investigators seeking grants are strongly encouraged to apply in the ANZCA grant round opening on 1 December 2022. Please check the website at that time for application forms and guidelines.

2023 AMERS and AMEARA grants

The ANZCA Melbourne Emerging Anaesthesia Researcher Award and the ANZCA Melbourne Emerging Researcher Scholarship will once again be awarded for projects to commence in 2023, for an emerging investigator’s and a research higher degree candidate’s study respectively.
Applications for these grants will once again be through the University of Melbourne Department of Critical Care, and open to fellows and trainees at ‘UniMelb’ affiliated hospitals, thanks to Dr Peter Lowe; ANZCA Foundation Governor Patron and the generous annual benefactor of these awards since 2015.

Research and the Reconciliation Action Plan

The foundation continues to work with the Research Committee in supporting the ANZCA Reconciliation Action Plan, including considering a range of ideas to further encourage increased participation in and leadership of research led by Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Māori investigators. These will on the agenda at the committee’s strategic meeting in March 2023.

New Indigenous health projects funded

The foundation committee has approved funding for three exciting new Indigenous health projects to commence in 2023.
Dr Carolyn Deng will assess Māori patients and whānau (family) perceptions of attending an anaesthetic preadmission clinic, focussing on accessibility and cultural safety. Dr Hanna Bennett will revise and adapt the EQUIP pain education module for the Palm Island Indigenous community, to provide culturally safe and appropriate pain education, and Dr Arihia Wakka’s project will develop an ANZCA surgery-specific ‘karakia’ to be used by patients and their families prior to surgery, affording another layer of cultural safety.

Global development

Four global development projects for 2023 were also approved by the committee.
Dr Adam Mossenson will deliver three Virtual Anaesthesia Simulation Training (VAST) courses in Pune, India, to new post-graduate students to build facilitator capacity to implement the Foundation Year program.
Dr Nilru Vitharana will deliver the Pacific Paediatric Anaesthesia Insitu Teams Course (Pacific PAINTS) on resuscitation and management of the critically unwell child, and anaesthetic emergencies in a simulated environment, in Suva, Labasa and Lautoka.
Dr Mark Trembath’s project will provide anaphylaxis emergency response boxes for participating hospitals in the Pacific Islands, while Associate Professor Justin Skowno will collect pediatric anaesthesia and surgery mortality and morbidity information to support improved safety and quality and ongoing quality improvement in paediatric anaesthesia in Mongolia.

How to donate

The foundation has committed to supporting these exciting initiatives. If you are interested donating to help make them possible, or to helping advance ANZCA-sponsored exploratory research and leveraging government funding for fellow-led multicentre clinical trials, please donate with your subscription, or use the foundation donation portal as below.

Contact & Support

To donate, please use the 2023 subscriptions form, OR search ‘GiftOptions – ANZCA’ in your browser.

For queries, contact:

Research grants program:

Last updated 14:58 17.03.2023