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Invited Commentary
October 25, 2017

Using Epidemiology to Determine Surgical Needs in Low-Resource Settings

Author Affiliations
  • 1Stanford University, Stanford, California
  • 2Palo Alto Veterans Affairs Health Care System, Palo Alto, California
JAMA Surg. Published online October 25, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2017.4027

Maine et al1 have published the next step necessary to define the burden of surgically amenable conditions in low-resource settings.1 Over the last decade, there has been a rapid proliferation of interest in “global surgery,” as most recently reflected by the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery.2 Plaguing this movement has been a lack of robust, on-the-ground epidemiologic data describing the true denominator: the number of people who might benefit from surgical intervention—the unmet surgical need.

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