The most recent issue of the Harvard Otolaryngology Magazine (Fall 2016) devotes space to the work of Mark Shrime, MD, MPH, PhD, FACS, and Blake Alkire, MD, MPH. Drs. Shrime and Alkire were key members of the Lancet Global Surgery 2030 team, developing economic models exploring the supply and demand sides of global surgery – describing the GDP lossage that countries would experience from the unmet surgical disease burden and the barriers to access imposed on those in need of surgical treatment by impoverishing and catastrophic expenditures.
By expanding the economic understanding of surgery, its critical role in a robust, functioning health system that supports an expanding national economy and the complicated financial barriers preventing and punishing health-seeking behavior, Drs. Shrime and Alkire have helped move the conversation about global surgery forward towards inclusion in national health plans and global health indicators.