An analysis of the academic capacity of anaesthesia in the UK by publication trends and academic units
Ratnayake G., El-Boghdadly K., Pandit JJ.
© 2020 The Authors. Anaesthesia published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Association of Anaesthetists Over a decade ago, bibliometric analysis predicted the disappearance of UK publishing in anaesthesia by 2020. We repeated this analysis to assess if this had turned out to be the case, searching PubMed for papers associated with UK consultant anaesthetists for 2017–2019 across 15 journals. Although the rate of decline has flattened using the same search filter, including a wider range of publication types shows that outputs still remain at half 1990s levels (381 papers for all 3 years combined), authored by 769 anaesthetists, 274 of whom are associated with an academic centre. There are now 11 identifiable academic units, and a further 15 places where anaesthetists have affiliations with academic centres as individuals. The majority of papers (71%) are in secondary analysis (observational, database and association studies, surveys and meta-analyses), rather than in primary research (clinical trials or laboratory studies). These data reflect the current academic capacity in terms of publications, academic units and staffing. We discuss how this information can be used to inform a new strategy for UK academic anaesthesia.