Lancet Commission on Global Surgery

An open process to promote surgery as a public health measure

Welcome to the January 2016 newsletter of the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Happy New Year!  This month, we are spotlighting the WHO GIEESC meeting, the Commission's inaugural global implementation conference call, the Commission’s joint consensus statement with the Association of Rural Surgeons of India, and an upcoming conference in Cambodia.  Thank you and happy reading!



On December 14-15, representatives from around the world gathered in Geneva for the 10th anniversary meeting of the Global Initiative for Emergency and Essential Surgical Care (GIEESC). Now under the direction of Dr. Walter Johnson, the Initiative aims to capitalize on the momentum generated by WHA Resolution 68.15 “Strengthening emergency and essential surgical care and anaesthesia as a component of universal health coverage.” Drawing on the expertise of invited speakers, advocacy organizations, and academic movements, GIEESC has drafted a roadmap to implementation which will help member states prioritize and improve the delivery of surgical and anaesthesia care. Representatives from The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery joined colleagues from across the world at this meeting. We thank the WHO, GIEESC, and our global colleagues for two days of fruitful discussions that will shape our collaborations for years to come.
If you are interested in learning more, please visit

Lancet Commission on Global Surgery Global Implementation Call

The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery hosted its first global implementation conference call on Thursday, January 7, 2016, with over 50 participants that included Commissioners, Bellagio Commissioners, advisors, collaborators, and implementation partners of the Commission. Updates were provided on Commission implementation efforts in India, Cape Verde, and Zambia.  2015 was a tremendous year for surgical care within health systems and the global surgery community achieved a great deal by working together.  We hope to build on existing synergies and continue this collaborative spirit through 2016.

The next global implementation call will be held on Thursday, February 4, 2016 at 10:30-11:30 AM EST.  Anyone who is a part of or interested in the work of the Commission is welcome to join these calls and encouraged to contact us at  Minutes for January's call can be found here.

If you would like to join our implementation calls, please email

India Consensus Statement Available

India Consensus Statement Available

The Karad Consensus Statement on Surgical System Strengthening in Rural India is now available for signature.  A link to the consensus statement is provided here. This statement was drafted through a joint process between The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery and the Association of Rural Surgeons of India in fall of 2015. Lancet Commissioner and Health Delivery & Management Working Group Chair, Dr. Nobhojit Roy, led a writing team consisting of research fellows and associates at Harvard Medical School’s Program in Global Surgery and Social Change. The team interfaced with a group of twelve Indian rural surgeons to draft a consensus statement outlining nine actionable items in the areas of surgical infrastructure, workforce, and blood deficits in rural India. The draft consensus statement was presented at the Combined 23rd Annual Conference of the Association of Rural Surgeons of India (ARSI) and 6th Annual Conference of International Federation of Rural Surgeons (IFRS) in Karad, India on November 19, 2015 for general feedback and input, and amassed signatories from the majority of participants. The consensus statement with rural practitioners is the first step of long-term implementation strategy in India.

If you are interested in learning more, please visit our India implementation page

Phnom Penh Conference

The Phnom Penh Conference on Strengthening Essential and Emergency Surgery and Anesthesia will be held March 24-25, 2016.  The momentum continues to build for global surgery as researchers, advocates, policy makers, academics, healthcare professionals, and funders gather in Phnom Penh, Cambodia to discuss how best to meet the unmet surgical needs in the South and Southeast Asia region.  Dr. Nobhojit Roy, a commissioner from The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery, and Dr. Walt Johnson, the Lead for Essential and Emergency Surgical Care at the World Health Organization, will provide the background and the mandates of the WHA resolution 68.15 to the various stakeholders currently involved in surgical and anesthesia capacity-building in the region.  Collaboration amongst the actors and integration into national health plans will be emphasized.

Phnom Penh Conference

The Asian Australasian Society of Neurological Surgeons and the Cambodian Society of Neurosurgeons will hold a Neurotrauma Conference conjointly to help the regional neurosurgical community to understand the critical role of head and spine injury care in the context of essential and emergency surgical care in the region.

If you would like to learn more about the conference, please visit


Visit our Lancet website, which contains information about the Commission, as well as recent articles and podcasts. We are also still available on as well as Twitter and Facebook

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