The 2013 ASA Legislative Conference held in Washington, D.C. on April 29-May 3 highlighted the legislative, regulatory and state issues impacting our specialty and our patients. listening to the various presentations from our distinguished speakers, I was reminded of the responsibility that each of us has to preserve physician-led anesthesia care teams, patient access to physician care and patient safety. our grassroots efforts, along with ASA leadership and the staff in our Washington, D.C. office, we are making significant headway toward achieving these goals.

Since 2006, the number of new drug shortages has increased from 70 to 204 in 2012. Anesthesiologists, in particular, have experienced a dramatic increase in the number of shortages of critical drugs, including propofol, succinylcholine, epinephrine and fentanyl, to name a few.

In March 2012, ASA conducted a survey of 3,063 anesthesiologists to quantify the impact of drug shortages on our patients and practices. The survey...

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