Town with mountain in the background


  • 5 billion people lack access to safe, affordable surgical and anesthesia care when needed.
  • About 5.8 million people die each year as a result of injuries, or 8.6% of global mortality.
  • Nearly 1/3 of the 5.8 million deaths from injuries are the result of violence.
  • More than ¼ of injury deaths are the result of road traffic incidents.
  • Injury continues to rise in the rankings as a leading cause of death. Road traffic injuries are predicted to become the 5th leading cause of death by 2030.
  • 143 million additional surgical procedures are needed each year to save lives and prevent disability.
  • 33 million individuals face catastrophic health expenditure due to payment for surgery and anesthesia each year.
  • Provision of essential surgical procedures would avert about 1.5 million deaths a year, or 6-7% of all avertable deaths in low- and middle-income countries.
  • Investment in essential surgical procedures is highly cost-effective.
  • Measures to expand access to surgery, such as task sharing, have been shown to be safe and effective while countries make long-term investments in building surgical and anesthesia workforces.
  • Substantial disparities exist in the safety of surgical care, driven by high perioperative mortality rates including anesthesia-related deaths in low- and middle-income countries.


  • In the United States in 2018, unintentional injury was the third leading cause of death overall.
  • Interpersonal violence disproportionately affects minority populations, and homicide is the leading cause of death in young (15 to 24 years old) African Americans and second among young Hispanics.
  • Nearly 1.5 million nonfatal injuries occur among 15- to 34-year-olds, and the direct and indirect cost of these injuries is approximately $12 billion.
  • Hospital-based violence intervention has been proven to reduce injury recidivism, is cost-effective, and can be tailored to meet the needs of the local community.
  • In 2017 there were 40,231 deaths from traffic crashes in the United States.
  • Pedestrians and cyclists are more vulnerable to injury and death, and these groups are often made up of populations that are already vulnerable because of their socioeconomic status, race, and age.
  • Traffic injuries and deaths are preventable, and Vision Zero offers a roadmap for injury prevention methods that have been shown to be effective in preliminary research across the world.


  • Essential Surgery | DCP3. (n.d.). Retrieved March 6, 2015, from
    Global Health Estimates 2016: Deaths by Cause, Age, Sex, by Country and by Region, 2000-2016. Geneva, World Health Organization; 2018.
  • Mathers, C., Fat, D. M., Boerma, J. T., & World Health Organization (Eds.). (2008). The global burden of disease: 2004 update. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.
  • Meara, J. G., Leather, A. J. M., Hagander, L., Alkire, B. C., Alonso, N., Ameh, E. A., … Yip, W. (2015). Global Surgery 2030: evidence and solutions for achieving health, welfare, and economic development. The Lancet.
  • Mendoza AE, Wybourn CA, Mendoza MA, Cruz MJ, Juillard C, Dicker RA. The worldwide approach to Vision Zero: Implementing road safety strategies to eliminate traffic-related fatalities. Curr Trauma Reports. June 2017;3(2):104-110.
  • R Dicker, B Gaines, S Bonne, T Duncan, P Violano, M Aboutanos, L Allee, P Burke, P Masiakos, A Hink, D Kuhls, D Shapiro. Violence intervention programs: A primer for development of a comprehensive program for trauma centers. American College of Surgeons Bulletin October 2017
  • Weiser, T. G., Regenbogen, S. E., Thompson, K. D., Haynes, A. B., Lipsitz, S. R., Berry, W. R., & Gawande, A. A. (2008). An estimation of the global volume of surgery: a modelling strategy based on available data. Lancet, 372(9633), 139–144.
  • WHO | Injuries and violence: the facts. (n.d.). Retrieved February 10, 2015, from