Concern over surgical facilities

National

SAFE surgery and anaesthesia must be available and applied to save lives, an official says.
World Health Organisation country representative Dr Paulinus Sikosana said poor surgical facilities killed more people than HIV, TB and malaria combined.
Sikosana said more than 289,000 women died each year during childbirth because of the absence of safe surgery and anaesthesia.
“Strengthening emergency and essential surgical capacity, together with anaesthesia, particularly at the first level referral hospital, is a highly cost-efficient solution to this global burden of disease,” he said. “Deficiencies in access to emergency and essential surgical and anaesthetic services result in unacceptably high rates of deaths and disability from a host of surgical conditions, especially at primary health care facilities in low and middle-income countries like Papua New Guinea.”
Sikosana said studies should be carried out to specifically address barriers to surgical care in the rural areas.
“There is also a need to design tools that can look at the best way of researching the barriers to surgical care and that look at both the perceived barriers to care of service users and the actual barriers encountered by service providers.”

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