The need to collect, aggregate, and analyze global anesthesia and surgery data

Can J Anaesth. 2019 Feb;66(2):218-229. doi: 10.1007/s12630-018-1261-5. Epub 2018 Nov 27.


In the Sustainable Development Goals era, there is a new awareness of the need for an integrated approach to healthcare interventions and a strong commitment to Universal Health Coverage. To achieve the goal of strengthening entire health systems, surgery, as a crosscutting treatment modality, is indispensable. For any health system strengthening exercise, baseline data and longitudinal monitoring of progress are necessary. With improved data capabilities, there are unparalleled possibilities to map out and understand systems, integrating data from many sources and sectors. Nevertheless, there is also a need to prioritize among indicators to avoid information overload and data collection fatigue. There is a similar need to define indicators and collection methodology to create standardized and comparable data. Finally, there is a need to establish data pathways to ensure clear responsibilities amongst national and international institutions and integrate surgical metrics into existing mechanisms for sustainable data collection. This is a call to collect, aggregate, and analyze global anesthesia and surgery data, with an account of existing data sources and a proposed way forward.

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia / statistics & numerical data*
  • Anesthesiology / statistics & numerical data*
  • Data Collection
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • General Surgery / statistics & numerical data*
  • Global Health
  • International Cooperation