Anaesthesia and Perioperative Care Priority Setting Partnership


About the Partnership

The Anaesthesia and Perioperative Care Priority Setting Partnership is a collaborative effort asking patients, the public and clinical professionals to identify the most important directions for new research in anaesthesia and perioperative care.

The ten highest priorities for new research were chosen at the Final Workshop on 12th May 2015; you can see these Top Ten Research Priorities here and read about how they were selected below. Please watch our short animation describing the PSP process and outcomes:

Anaesthesia and Perioperative Care Priority Setting animation


This Priority Setting Partnership (PSP) was overseen and monitored by the James Lind Alliance (JLA). To date, the JLA has facilitated over 20 PSPs for conditions as diverse as multiple sclerosis, prostate cancer and stillbirth, bringing together clinicians and patients to identify and prioritise research questions in order to influence future research in that area. This process runs broadly as follows:

  • A survey to gather research ideas from patients, carers and clinicians.
  • The suggestions are then compared with the scientific literature and narrowed down by voting ('interim prioritisation')
  • A final workshop is held, where 20-30 patient and clinician representatives review the most popular research questions, and arrive by mutual consensus at a 'top ten' list of research priorities.

The Anaesthesia and Perioperative Care PSP began in early 2013 when the James Lind Alliance accepted a proposal from the National Institute of Academic Anaesthesia (NIAA) to run an "Anaesthesia PSP". This soon evolved into the Anaesthesia and Perioperative Care PSP. A Steering Group of patient representatives and clinicians was then formed and potential stakeholders (e.g. the specialist anaesthetics societies and patient representation groups) were approached to sign up as 'partner organisations'.

Stakeholders Involved

The 'professional' stakeholder organisations included the two main anaesthetic professional organisations (RCoA and AAGBI), anaesthetic specialist societies, as well as the Royal College of Surgeons (Eng) and various organisations representing other healthcare professionals involved in perioperative care delivery. Between them these professional organisations represent over 40,000 members.

The 'patient, carer and public' stakeholder organisations represented a diverse range of patients with experience of anaesthesia and perioperative care. The total active membership of the affiliated organisations was estimated at well over 50,000; the overall 'patient reach' of the partner organisations is likely to number several million. For example, Age UK and the National Childbirth Trust each support over a million patients and carers every year. More information about the affiliated partner organisations can be found here


The first survey (gathering research ideas and suggestions) was conducted online during June and July 2014. The second 'prioritisation' survey was open from early February until the beginning of April 2015. The final stakeholder workshop, to agree the final 'Top Ten Priorities' was held at the AAGBI (Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland) in May 2015.

Please click on the tabs on the left to view the results and for more information on the PSP.

Any questions? Please feel free to contact us.