Prioritise surgical care, global health leaders told

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The FIA Foundation has joined almost 100 global surgical, trauma, anesthesia, academic, and non-government organizations that have together urged global health agency leaders and the International Health Partnership (IHP+) to prioritize surgical indicators as a part of the Global Reference List of 100 Core Health Indicators. This list is the basis of future health indicators for the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals.

Representing more than 150 countries, the organizations released an open letter in The Lancet authored by Emmanuel Malabo Makasa of the Permanent Mission of Zambia to the United Nations. The letter, addressed to the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Bank, and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), urged inclusion of key surgical indicators such as perioperative mortality rates, density of trained health care providers, and cost.

Essential surgery and anaesthesia are essential components of Post-Crash Response, Pillar 5 in the Decade of Action for Road Safety framework. Two billion people lack access to basic surgical services worldwide with less than 4% of surgeries being conducted in the world’s poorest countries.

“Surgical and anaesthesia care is essential in the post-crash care of victims of road traffic accidents. Millions of lives can be saved with an effective trauma system, available trained staff that can deliver high quality basic and advanced trauma life support, and a skilled surgical workforce that can provide the best chance of restoring the injured back to a life free of pain and disability,” said Dr. Jaymie Henry, MD, MPH, Founder and Executive Director of the International Collaboration for Essential Surgery (ICES).

“We are proud to be a part of this important work to ensure that surgery and anaesthesia, which are so vital to preventing deaths and injuries after a crash, are an international priority. In order to successfully accomplish the current Health Target in the Post-2015 Draft of halving road traffic injuries and deaths, we must address all 5 Pillars of the Decade of Action framework, and essential surgical procedures are a key component of the Post-Crash Response pillar,” added Dr. Bella Dinh-Zarr, PhD, MPH, FIA Foundation U.S. Director.

The effort was spearheaded by the Global Alliance for Surgical, Obstetric, Trauma and Anaesthesia Care (the G4 Alliance), which is dedicated to advocating for the neglected surgical patient and driven by a mission of putting essential surgery on the global agenda.


Global Alliance for Surgical, Obstetric, Trauma and Anaesthesia Care >

Lancet Letter >

Signatories to Lancet Letter >

Road Safety Target in the Sustainable Development Goals >