Document Type

Article

Disciplines

Medicine and Health Sciences

Abstract

Global cleft surgery missions have provided much-needed care to millions of poor patients worldwide. Still, surgical capacity in low- and middle-income countries is generally inadequate. Through surgical missions, global cleft care has largely ascribed to a vertical model of healthcare delivery, which is disease specific, and tends to deliver services parallel to, but not necessarily within, the local healthcare system. The vertical model has been used to address infectious diseases as well as humanitarian emergencies. By contrast, a horizontal model for healthcare delivery tends to focus on long-term investments in public health infrastructure and human capital and has less often been implemented by humanitarian groups for a variety of reasons. As surgical care is an integral component of basic healthcare, the plastic surgery community must challenge itself to address the burden of specific disease entities, such as cleft lip and palate, in a way that sustainably expands and enriches global surgical care as a whole. In this paper, we describe a diagonal care delivery model, whereby cleft missions can enrich surgical capacity through integration into sustainable, local care delivery systems. Furthermore, we examine the applications of diagonal development to cleft care specifically and global surgical care more broadly.

Comments

Originally Published in :

Plast Surg Int. 2012; 2012: 892437. Published online 2012 December 20. doi: 10.1155/2012/892437 PMCID: PMC3539333 Copyright © 2012 Pratik B. Patel et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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