For WHO Regional Officers,

High-Level Authorities, and Funders

Date: March 20 - 21, 2019
Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery-Dubai
Dubai, UAE
Location: Grand Hyatt Hotel


"No country can achieve Universal Health Coverage unless its people have access to safe, timely, and affordable surgical services...It's therefore vital that countries invest in surgery."

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization




Recognizing the indispensable role of surgical care and anesthesia in achieving Universal Health Coverage (SDG 3.8), this workshop will support country-led plans for scaling up of surgical and anaesthesia care as part of health system strengthening and explore potential financing mechanisms. This workshop will focus on global and regional collaboration, the role of WHO Regional Offices, high level authorities, Ministry of Health leadership, and funding agencies.



  1. Understand the current landscape of global surgery and anesthesia and the key steps to a National Surgical Obstetrics and Anaesthesia Plan (NSOAP) including implementation options and tools.

  2. Explore the role that WHO and other high-level authorities can play in supporting the NSOAP process in member states.

  3. Explore innovative financing mechanisms for surgical system strengthening.


After the completion of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  1. Support NSOAP planning processes by engaging and informing key national stakeholders while leveraging external support for developing surgical plans.

  2. Frame financing of surgical, obstetric, and anesthesia care as indispensable to achieving UHC and economic development, and seek strategically aligned financing mechanisms for NSOAPs.

  3. Define concrete next steps for advancing NSOAPs globally, regionally and nationally.






Presentation titles highlighted in RED are available for download.

NSOAP Workshop Program:

Day 1

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

9:00 – 9:25 a.m.             Welcome and Opening Remarks

Walter Johnson (World Health Organization)

Salmaan Keshavjee (Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery – Dubai)

John G. Meara (Harvard University)


9:25 - 9:30 a.m.             Welcome Video

         Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus



9:30 – 10:00 a.m.           The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery and the case for National Surgical, Obstetric, and

Anaesthesia Plans

John G. Meara (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)

10:00 – 10:30 a.m.         NSOAPs and the WHO HQ: Progress on WHA 68.15, and the role of the WHO

Walter Johnson (WHO)


10:30 – 10:55 a.m.         Theoretical Framework for National Surgical, Obstetric and Anaesthesia Plans

Desmond Jumbam (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)

Che-Len Reddy (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)

10:55 – 11:15 a.m.         Break

11:15 –12:15 p.m.          Panel 1: Milestones in NSOAP development and implementation in the Africa Region

Moderator: Shiva Murugasampillay (Zimbabwe)

Emmanuel Makasa (Zambia)

Emile Rwamasirabo (Rwanda)

Ben Nangombe (Namibia)

12:15 – 1:00 p.m.           Adapting the NSOAP framework to the Pakistani context

Lubna Samad (Indus Health Network)

1:00 – 2:30 p.m.            Lunch and group photo


2:30 – 3:15 p.m.            Panel 2: Global surgical indicator tracking: progress, challenges and opportunities     

          Moderator: John Meara (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)

          Emi Suzuki (World Bank)

          Lord Viliami Tangi (Tonga)

          Haitham Shoman (PGSSC)

3:15 – 3:30 p.m.            Break



3:30 – 4:00 p.m.           The SADC resolution: A regional approach to NSOAP development

                                          Shiva Murugasampillay (Zimbabwe) and Emmanuel Makasa (Zambia)


4:00 - 4:30 p.m.            Fireside Chat: The Role of WHO Regional Offices in the NSOAP Process

                              Ravaghi Hamid (WHO EMRO) and Walter Johnson (WHO)

4:30 - 5:00 p.m.            Macroeconomics of Surgical Care

        Blake Alkire (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)



5:00 - 5:30 p.m.            Closing Remarks

          John Meara (Program in Global Surgery and Social Change)

NSOAP Workshop Program:

Day 2

Thursday, March 21, 2019

8:30 – 8:45 a.m.            Review of Day One and Overview of Day Two objectives

          Walter Johnson (WHO)

8:45 – 9:30 a.m.            Strategies for working with the World Bank Group to promote NSOAP development and

                                      implementation globally

        Khama Odera Rogo (World Bank) 


9:30 - 10:30 a.m.           Panel 4: Mobilizing global resources for NSOAP development and implementation 

                                      Moderator: John G. Meara (PGSSC)

          María Cruz de Ciria Matilla (AECID)

          Hoon Sang Lee (KOICA)

          Monique Wubbenhorst (USAID)

          Kanako Yamasita-Allen (World Bank)      


10:30 – 11:00 a.m.        Break


11:00 – 12:00 a.m.        Panel 5: The role of professional societies in NSOAPS

                     Moderator: Lubna Samad

                     Adrian Gelb (WFSA)

         Faysal El Kak (FIGO)

          Syed Shershah (International Society of Obstetric Fistula)

          Kee Park (WFNS)

12:00 – 12:30 p.m.        WHO Resources for Emergency and Trauma Care Implementation   

                                           Teri Reynolds (WHO)

12:30 –2:00 p.m.           Lunch


2:00 – 3:00 p.m.            Panel 6: The Way Forward in Asia 

          Moderator: Kee Park (PGSSC)      

          Akmal Taher (Indonesia)

          Noor Hisham Abdullah (Malaysia)

          Bikash Devkota (Nepal)

          Kyi Hlaing (Myanmar)

          Lalantha Ranansinghe (Sri Lanka)


3:00 - 3:30 p.m.            Break



3:30 - 4:15 p.m.            Panel 7: The Way Forward in the Western Pacific

        Moderator: Lord Viliami Tangi (Tonga)

         Noah Tapaua (Papua New Guinea)

         Rooney Jagilly (Soloman Islands)

         Eddie McCaig (Fiji)

         Kiki Maoate (New Zealand)



4:15 – 4:45p.m.            Drafting and review of consensus statement on the way forward

         Moderators: John Meara (PGSSC) and Walt Johnson (WHO)

4:45 - 5:00 p.m.            Closing Remarks

                                           Walter Johnson (WHO)

7:30 p.m.                      Group Dinner at the Raffles Hotel



© 2020 by Harvard Program in Global Surgery and Social Change

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