We endorse the vision established through consensus by the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery:
Universal Access to Safe, Affordable Surgical and Anaesthesia Care When Needed.
We further agree to propagate the Commission's five key messages:
1. 5 billion people are unable to access safe surgery when needed
2. Scaling up surgical anaesthesia care will need at least 143 million additional procedures annually
3. Affordability: current estimates suggest 33 million individuals face catastrophic health expenditure due to payment for surgery and anaesthesia each year and a further 48m from additional costs from transport, food or loss of earnings.
4. Investment in surgical and anaesthesia services is affordable, saves lives, and promotes economic growth
5. Surgery is an indivisible, indispensable part of health care and thus must be integrated within the health system and is essential to universal health coverage.
The Colleges undertake to promote research on access to safe, affordable and timely surgery, reporting on the WHO's and the Lancet Commission's recommended surgical indicators. We will progress these within our region and support low and middle income countries with whom we partner and will report progress at the October 2015 American College of Surgeons Congress and subsequently at the May 2016 Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Congress. We support the World Health Assembly Resolution 68/31 on the need to strengthen emergency and essential surgical care, and promote the urgency of its implementation to our respective ministries of health. Lancet Commission Report (26 April 2015) available at: http://www.thelancet.com/pdfs/journals/lancet/PIIS0140-6736(15)60160-X.pdf