Greeting from the Chairman
The 68th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Society of Anesthesiologists
Chairman: Professor Kanuyoshi Hirota
(Department of Anesthesiology, Hirosaki University Graduate School of Medicine)
I am honored to have been appointed as the Chairman of the 68th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Society of Anesthesiologists (JSA). The chairman representing the Tohoku region is the first time in 28 years since Dr. Reiji Wakuzawa, Professor in Department of Anesthesiology, Iwate Medical University, who chaired the 40th annual meeting held in Morioka City in April 1993. Since the Tohoku region was hit by the devastating disaster of 2011 Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami, the medical care in the Tohoku region has been in sever conditions. Therefore, I have been hoping to bring some vitality to Tohoku region somehow, and I am extremely honored to be elected as the chairman and would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you.
The 68th Annual Meeting is scheduled to be held in Kobe for 3 days from June 3 (Thu.) to June 5 (Sat.), 2021. Although I would have preferred the annual meeting in the Tohoku region like the 40th annual meeting, the number of members of JSA has significantly increased compared with that in the 40th meeting, and participants could exceed 10,000. Unfortunately, there is no place which can accommodate such many attendees in the Tohoku region. In addition, International Symposium on the History of Anesthesia (ISHA) will be held in Kobe at the same period. Therefore, I would be grateful if you could understand the decision to choose Kobe as the venue as the last year.
We have decided “Role of anesthesiologists for the superaging society” as the theme of this annual meeting. Currently, the average lifespan of Japanese individuals is approximately 81 years for men and 87 years for women, and a recent demographic survey predicts that the median lifespan of children born in 2007 is 107 years. That means the reality of the centenarian society is just around the corner. Nevertheless, healthy life expectancy is approximately 72 years for men and 75 years for women. The difference between the average lifespan and healthy life expectancy is 9 years for men and 12 years for women. Therefore, there is a period with health problems for nearly 10 years at the end of our life. Considering this, I believe these elderly patients will often end up undergoing surgery in the future, and it is the key role for anesthesiologists how to perform safe perioperative managements in elderly patients and support them in prompt recovery after the surgery. As the elderly patients often develop respiratory and cardiovascular complications, postoperative delirium, or cognitive dysfunction, we can provide such patients with gentle postoperative care by either preventing or promptly treating these complications. Moreover, these treatments can help to shorten the length of hospital stay and it could also contribute to hospital management efficiency in severe circumstances. Therefore, to ensure a healthy and happy life for the elderly people, we, anesthesiologists, need to conduct research on the perioperative management of elderly patients, including both clinical and basic aspects comprehensively, and endeavor to return the results to the society. Hence, I would like to discuss this viewpoint with you at the annual meeting – regarding how anesthesiologists could contribute to the superaging society.
Apart from the issue, the work style reform has often been suggested recently. However, I suppose it is difficult to directly apply the regular doctors’ work style reform to the anesthesiologists. The percentage of female doctors in this field is comparatively high compared to other fields, and unlike male anesthesiologists, female anesthesiologists making up the majority of young anesthesiologists take maternity leave and childcare leave during a crucial period of their career development. In addition, gender equality in Japan falls behind that in developed countries. These circumstances raise issues regarding the work style reforms for anesthesiologists. Considering these reasons, I would like to discuss this matter with you as well during the session, including invited lectures and symposiums.
We are currently working hard with the executive committee members on the planning projects for each field in order to meet all expectations of our members. Although I think that it is tough for you to take time from the busy daily clinical practice, I sincerely hope that you can attend this annual meeting and gain new knowledge for your future medical care.
I look forward to as many of you as possible attending the meeting.