World Health Organisation: surgery is underfunded in the developing world

Posted by Graham Hextell on Aug 08, 2014

World Health Organisation

Surgery in the developing world

The World Health Organisation estimates that more than 90% of deaths from injuries occur in low and middle income countries – and this is not surprising considering only 3.5% of surgery done worldwide takes place in the developing world. Injuries caused through workplace and road traffic accidents are on the increase as the push towards urbanisation and city living continues.

There is a misconception that it is too difficult to train doctors to become surgeons and the infrastructure & equipment needed to create an operating environment is too expensive. Proper management of trauma related injury with surgery is necessary, and can be done cost effectively with the involvement of well run organisations such as Orthopaedic Outreach. It is far more cost effective to provide basic trauma surgery at the time an injury occurs than to address the consequences of having no treatment, or poor treatment. The value of surgical intervention is enormous when we consider that we enable people to return to a productive and financially independent life.

Outreach surgeons give their time and expertise voluntarily. Together with the support of industry, corporate donors, donations from Australian surgeons and generous individuals, we know it is possible to make a difference.