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The Department of Anaesthesia strives to:

  • Deliver outstanding care to adult and paediatric patients in the peri–operative period.
  • Provide an excellent education for our Specialist Registrars, Senior House Officers and Medical Students, as well as continuing education and professional development for our Consultant and Career Grade staff.

We are committed to ensuring that all patients peri–operative and pain medicine care are treated in a compassionate fashion using state of the art medicine with a focus on patient safety. We embrace the diversity of our community through a philosophy of trust, respect and understanding.

If you have any queries about the services that we as a department are able to provide contact us by telephone on 01305 254414.

If you have a particular query about your anaesthetic the Royal College of Anaesthetists offer plenty of information:

Patients and relatives

Children and parents

Young person's web guide

Guidelines for patients undergoing surgery as part of an Enhanced Recovery Programme

Anaesthetic Team

All our Anaesthetists have medical degrees and are registered with the General Medical Council. All Consultant staff are Fellows of the Royal College of Anaesthetists or equivalent and have undergone eight years of accredited postgraduate training in anaesthesia. All Consultant staff are on the General Medical Council’s Specialist Register.

Our team consists of the Anaesthetic doctors assisted by highly skilled operating department personnel and specialist nursing staff. Nursing staff also play a key role in the Pre–Operative Assessment Clinic, in the Anaesthetic Room, in Recovery and in the Critical Care areas.

Our Staff today consists of 11 Consultants, 5 Career grade staff, 5 Specialist Registrars and 8 Senior House Officers. The department is rapidly expanding as demand for our services increases.

All staff participate in a programme of in–house education as well as attending national and international meetings. We practise audit and clinical governance within are department to ensure that we are delivering the highest quality of care.

We actively participate in the education of our patients, families and members of our community about healthcare concerns related to anaesthesia, pain management and critical care medicine.

Theatre Equipment and Anaesthetic Care

Our ability to provide the highest quality of care is facilitated by having access to the best anaesthetic machines and equipment as well as a complete assortment of pharmacological tools. We use both general and regional anaesthetic techniques either alone or in combination to reduce patients stress response to surgery. Regional anaesthesia is provided by single shot or catheter techniques and is provided by our dedicated group of Anaesthetists using the latest in block placement techniques including ultrasound imaging.

Post–operative care is under the guidance of the Anaesthetic Staff

Emergency Care

As a department we are committed to providing a 24–hour service for emergency surgery, trauma care, obstetric analgesia service (epidurals for child birth), and anaesthesia service for maternity providing anaesthesia and pain relief for caesarean section and instrumental delivery.

We also provide dedicated medical cover to the Critical Care Areas. Our resident staff play a key role in the Trauma Team as well as the Cardiac Arrest Team.

Pre–operative Assessment

Our department includes a ground breaking pre-operative assessment unit. Our involvement in preoperative assessment is designed to evaluate and minimize the risks to the patient of undergoing their procedure.

Please see below a number of patient information videos. 

This video is for anyone who is thinking about having a nerve block for an operation on the shoulder, arm or hand. It will be of particular interest to people who would prefer not to have a general anaesthetic and are having an operation on their arm, elbow or hand.  It has been created by the Regional Anaesthesia UK Society who have given us permission to share. 


This video for is patients who smoke and are having an operation.  It explains the benefits of stopping smoking before surgery - even for a brief time. It was produced with support from the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and endorsed by the British Thoracic Society.


This video was created by the Royal College of Anaesthetists. This video is for anyone having an operation and provides patients with the information they need to become fitter and better prepared for their operation.  We know that the fitter a patient is before their operation,  the quicker they will recover from their surgery and encounter fewer post operative complications.  


This video is an excellent resource for patients to explain how the NHS works and how it is changing. It was created by the King's Fund. 


Scope of care
Annually we anaesthetise 20,000 patients for operative procedures. We treat 500 patients in the critical care unit and provide anaesthetic services to 1,900 women during childbirth.

We provide anaesthetic services across West Dorset at Bridport Hospital, Weymouth Community Hospital, Blandford Hospital and Swanage Hospital. Consultant Staff provide anaesthetic care at the private Winterbourne Hospital.