Surgical care is the solution to Universal Health Coverage
Investing in surgery is investing in Health for All
When we invest in surgical care, we are investing in the mother who is having a complicated birth. It’s investing in the cancer patient who requires a biopsy. It’s investing in the child who’s born with club foot. It’s investing in the family who’s been in a car accident. Improving surgical care access in low- and middle- income countries impact a country’s entire health system. If a country wants to achieve Universal Health Coverage, they must invest in surgical care first.
Surgery is highly cost-effective
Countries benefit from healthy populations. A country which doesn’t invest in surgical care stands to lose $12.3 trillion in GDP by 2030. This will perpetuate aid dependency. Global health donors need to ensure health systems are resilient and independent. Weak health systems constrain the success of any health intervention, including disease-specific ones.
The time to invest in surgery is now
Covid-19 has uncovered weak healthcare systems everywhere. Hospitals and health centres struggled to cope. Healthcare workers were overworked and overwhelmed. People died because they didn't’ have access to life-saving equipment. The world stopped. If global health donors turned their attention to creating stronger health systems instead of diseases, the reality could have been very different. Too many people died during the pandemic while waiting for the surgery they needed. We cannot make the same mistakes.
It's time to invest in an equitable future where every person has access to the healthcare they deserve. We’re on a mission to achieve Surgery for All.
Without investment in surgical care, we will never achieve many of the global goals set to create a Better, Fairer World. We will never achieve Universal Health Coverage. If surgical care was prioritised:
- 17 million people every year wouldn’t die of treatable conditions
- A quarter of maternal deaths would be avoided
- It would prevent millions of people from living with a disability
- Countries will increase the number of surgical care providers
- Children with birth defects won’t live a life of disability, won’t miss out on school and their families won’t struggle financially.
- We will be one step closer to achieving Universal Health Coverage and Health for All. We’ll be one step closer to living on a fairer world.