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International Community Should Commit To Improving Access To Surgical Care

Global Health NOW: Do We Have a Right to Surgery? The Case for Access to All
Rolvix Patterson, medical and public health student at Tufts University School of Medicine and research associate at Harvard’s Program for Global Surgery and Social Change, and Jacquelyn Corley, neurological surgery resident at Duke University Medical Center, Paul Farmer research fellow at Harvard’s Program for Global Surgery and Social Change, and human rights journalist

“…Studies show that one third of the world’s burden of disease can be treated with surgery, and yet 70 percent of the global population lacks access to surgical care. … To protect the right to surgery and ensure that everybody has access, we need a concerted effort across all levels of global health, from individuals to international multilateral organizations. Donors and advocates need to support and promote organizations committed to building local surgical capacity in resource-poor settings. Large-scale international organizations like the WHO, World Bank, and universities need to support and facilitate national surgical planning by local governments and health ministries. … [M]omentum is gathering to change this paradigm, and everyone has a role to play in promoting better health across the world” (9/20).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.