Safer Surgery for Africa

Bruce Biccard has written a book: ‘Safer Surgery for Africa: Challenges and Solutions.’

What is the book about?

Almost everyone will need surgery in their lifetime, but in Africa nearly 95% of the population do not have access to safe and affordable surgery and anaesthesia. More people die after surgery than from HIV, TB, and malaria combined. In Africa, adults are twice as likely to die after surgery, and for children that number rockets to eleven. Mothers who need caesarean sections face the greatest risk: the mortality rate is fifty times higher than high-income countries. Most of these deaths do not happen in the theatre, but on the ward during recovery.

Through extensive research and personal narratives from physicians across the continent, Professor Bruce Biccard provides a history of death and surgery, describes the current state of surgery in Africa, and presents two models for improving surgical care and outcomes.

Fortunately, the solutions are simple and cost-effective, but making them happen has never been easy; even the basic hygiene we now take for granted was once met with resistance. So, Bruce presents a manifesto for surgical health, showing us all how to make the world a healthier place.

How can I find out more about the book: why don’t you listen to the Podcast Series?

Prior to release of the book, an accompanying podcast series was hosted by Olivia Taylor from Earthcast. Bruce discusses each part of the book with African and global experts. Please listen to the podcast series. The links below can be used access the podcast series from the various platforms:

  • Spotify podcasts
  • Apple podcasts

  • Hosted by earthcast_ and olivia_earth

  • Episode 1. S3E31 Professor Bruce Biccard. Championing Surgical Safety in Africa. An Anaesthetist’s Story
  • Episode 2. S3E32 Professor Sue Fawcus & Adjunct Professor Agya Prempeh. Surgery & Survival- Exploring Health Equity in Africa
  • Episode 3. S3E33 Dr Nicky Kalafatis & Professor Rupert Pearse. Improving Health Care: Collective Competency and Information Sharing
  • Episode 4. S3E34 Prof Emmanuel Malabo Makasa & Prof John Meara. Health Advocacy and Resource Constraints
  • Episode 5. S3E35 Professor Lydia Cairncross & Professor Wayne Morriss. Political Leverage and Activism
  • Episode 6. S3E36 Professor Salome Maswime & Dr Tinashe Chandauka. Global Health System Strengthening
  • Episode 7. S3E37 Professor Bruce Biccard. A Manifesto for Surgical Health in Africa

  • How can I get a copy of the book?

    The book is available on Amazon: a print version (available now), and the Kindle ebook (available by 2 March 2024).
    Link: Safer Surgery for Africa: Challenges and Solutions.
    It is best to use your local Amazon website for ordering.

    Help share the message of Safer Surgery for Africa

    You can help advocacy for safer surgery and anaesthesia in Africa by tweeting using #SaferSurgeryAfrica or writing a review of the book on Amazon.

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