The International Association for Ambulatory Surgery (IAAS) was founded in 1996 and is a registered charity in Belgium EU. The IAAS is the only non-profit umbrella organization based on membership of national ambulatory surgery associations from countries around the world, and independent medical associations. Over half of the EU member countries are represented in the IAAS.
“Day Surgery: Making it Happen” represents the overall vision of the IAAS – working together, through education, consultation and communication, with national societies, governmental organizations and service providers with the goal of furthering the understanding of the benefits and advantages of day surgery as well as the barriers to its full development.
The mission of the IAAS is to promote the worldwide development and growth of high quality ambulatory surgery worldwide. Day surgery has proven itself to be a high-quality, safe and cost-effective approach to surgical health care. In this light, IAAS members work together to carry out this mission free of partisan spirit, polemics and prejudice, and are committed to the values of solidarity and equity of access to healthcare.
The objectives of the International Association for Ambulatory Surgery are: to promote the development of high quality ambulatory surgery; to stimulate the formation of national associations for ambulatory surgery; to promote education and training in ambulatory surgery for surgeons, anaesthetists and nurses; to encourage multi-disciplinary working in ambulatory surgery; to stimulate research in ambulatory surgery; to form a database of ambulatory surgery and anaesthesia; to promote the international exchange of knowledge and experience in ambulatory surgery; to organise seminars and conferences on ambulatory surgery; to develop internationally agreed guidelines for the practice of ambulatory surgery; to publish the peer reviewed international journal, Ambulatory Surgery; to collaborate with International healthcare bodies.
In pursuit of these aims, the IAAS carries out a number of activities, including publishing, networking, research and training.
Publishing activities include a website, the international peer reviewed journal on ambulatory surgery, entitled Ambulatory Surgery, and a tri-annual newsletter. The website (www.iaasmed. com) contains agreed international guidelines and definitions for the practice of ambulatory surgery, undergraduate medical education core curriculum criteria on day surgery, issues of the journal Ambulatory Surgery and the newsletter. In development are a bibliography and an advice service. The journal, Ambulatory Surgery, provides a scientific multidisciplinary international forum for all health care professionals involved in day care surgery. The newsletter provides news from the IAAS and national societies. Also, the IAAS produces special publications focusing on specific issues of DaySurgery. The most important ones are: the booklet ”Policy Brief – Day Surgery: Making it Happen” published in 2007 by the World Health Organisation on behalf of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies in collaboration with the IAAS; the book “Day Surgery – Development and Practice” (Ed. P.Lemos, P.Jarrett, B.Philip) which covers surgery, anaesthesia and management in ambulatory surgery. Another publication is planne to be prepared during 2013 related tot he policy recommendations of the DSDP project.
Networking activities include the biennial International Congress on Ambulatory Surgery held at different venues around the world. The 2011 Congress was held in Copenhagen, Denmark and the 2013 congress will be held in Budapest, Hungary and the participation of members as speakers and moderators in national ambulatory surgery congresses.
Research activities include regular international benchmarking exercises every two years to measure the rate of day surgery (as a percentage of all surgery and / or as a percentage of all elective surgery) in one country for comparison with day surgery activity in other countries and participation as collaborating partner in 2 European Projects, Day Surgery Data Project and DaySafe. The IAAS is involved in the dissemination of information and results.
Regular training activities include training sessions held in conjunction with IAAS congresses and exchange visits to day units in various countries for doctors, nurses, managers and politicians to see different types of day surgery facilities and to find out how ambulatory surgery is practiced in various settings. In 2003, the IAAS collaborated with European Space Agency on the Sky Med pilot project for computer based training of day surgery staff, in 2012 it organized the first the Train the Trainers course imed at providing health care professionals, hospital managers and policy makers, particularly from Eastern Europe, the essential notions for capacity building in the area of Day Surgery . As part of 2013 work plan it will organize a series of training courses in Eastern Europe aiming at contributing to creating the critical mass of professionals interested in Day Surgery and motivted to bringing change.
The last 15 years have seen the rapid growth of ambulatory surgery in the more developed countries and significant improvement has been achieved in many IAAS member countries, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Hungary. In this light, the main objective of the IAAS 2013-2014 work plan is the sustainable growth of ambulatory surgery in countries with enormous potential for growth, as can be seen by the decision to organize the 2013 International Congress in Budapest. The overall vision of the IAAS “DAY SURGERY – MAKING IT HAPPEN” is thereby translated into the following 2014 objectives:
• Further strengthen the relations with Southern and Eastern European members and their proactive role within the association in order to contribute to the reduction of the gap in day surgery services;
• Strengthen the relations between the academic world and the health care providers by promoting the establishment of research networks focusing on day surgery.
• Exploit the results produced by DSD, EU funded project in which IAAS was a collaborating partner, and promotion of the sustainability of these results through strengthening of the relations with international health organizations and their involvement in activities related to the further development and application of such results.
• Contribute to introducing the culture of day surgery and new management models related to its application by providing training opportunities, facilitating exchange of information. Activities in 2014 will build on the past experience: participation as collaborating partner in EU funded projects and the “Train the Trainers” educational plan of 2012.The main pillars of the 2014 work plan will be: 1.Capacity building exercise targeting health managers and clinicians in management positions. This includes two main components: Training workshops and exchange visits. Training activities will take place in two different member states, one in Croatia and one in Greece and be jointly implemented by the IAAS and the local contacts or individual members. The trainers will be those prepared by IAAS during 2012 and 2013 with the support of the IAAS experienced members. To ensure continous quality improvement the cross cultural training guide will be updated and made available to the trainers. The recruitment of participants and course logistics will be handled locally. Follow up and exchange visits in / from the countries / organizations participating in the workshops are meant to help those health organizations interested in the immediate change to plan and set up the new model by providing on the site advice or offering the opportunity to see the application of best practices. 2. Stimulation and dissemination of research activities. As one of the core activities of IAAS, dissemination of the most recent research findings to IAAS members, the greater scientific and policy making community will be carried out through the IAAS’s electronic channels. The activities in this pillar include publication of the scientific Journal and the Newsletter, maintenance of the website as well as the special workshop on"The future of Day surgery" The workshop will bring together representatives of the academic world with care providers and will aim at stimulating the development of a joint research framework 3. Networking and benchmarking activities:The General Assembly represents the major yearly networking opportunity for all the members and provides a forum for wide discussion. In the occasion of the GA, a special workshop will be organized aimed at reviewing the content of the questionnaire used for the biennial survey on DS. Special attention will be paid to the minimum set of indicators developed by the DSDP project, of which the IAAS was a collaborating partner. The workshop will be organized in collaboration with OECD / OSE and its outcomes will be further elaborated by the task group on surgical statistics and the final survey tool will be prepared and approved by the GA members before its application in 2015. In this new survey, attention will be paid to the economic aspects.