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Anaesthetist

Anaesthetists are doctors who give anaesthetics to patients before, during and after surgery.

Potential salary

£24,907 to £73,664

Employment by 2024

+4.68%

Working hours

41 to 43 a week

  • knowledge of medicine
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • knowledge of biology
  • the ability to use your judgement and make decisions
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

You may:

  • prepare patients for anaesthesia by explaining any risks or side effects
  • give anaesthetics to patients
  • observe and monitor patients during surgery
  • resuscitate and stabilise patients in the emergency department
  • relieve pain during childbirth
  • ease pain after an operation
  • manage acute and chronic pain
  • help patients receiving treatments like electric shock therapy
  • complete administration tasks and deal with patients on wards or in clinics

You may need to wear a uniform.

You could work in an NHS or private hospital.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.

As a consultant anaesthetist in the NHS, you may also find opportunities to work in the private sector. With experience you might lead or manage departments.

With experience and entry on the General Medical Council (GMC) Specialist Register, you could apply for senior (or consultant) roles.

You could also teach medical students, postgraduate doctors in training, nurses, midwives and paramedics.

You can find more details about this career from the Royal College of Anaesthetists and Health Careers.

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