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Invited Critique
February 2010

Surgical Care Delivery and World HealthComment on

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Department of Surgery, The American University Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon.

Arch Surg. 2010;145(2):160. doi:10.1001/archsurg.2009.272

In developed countries, surgical interventions are considered crucial for the delivery of state-of-the-art health care to the community. It is estimated that there are 234.2 million major surgical procedures performed worldwide annually; however, 30% of the world's population receives 73.6% of these procedures while the poorest third receives only 3.5%.1 The article by Kushner et al, with data from 132 district-level facilities in 8 LMICs, reminds us that, unfortunately, there continue to be significant shortfalls in the delivery of surgical and anesthetic care to the poor world. Kushner et al highlight the fact that improving the delivery of surgical and anesthetic care can contribute to achieving the United Nations MDGs 4 (child health), 5 (maternal health), 6 (HIV/AIDS prevention), and probably 1 (eradication of poverty).

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