Climate change is the biggest threat posed to human health in the 21st century. Yet, notably, emissions from the healthcare sector constitute up to 6% of global greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. The Climate in Obstetrics, Anesthesia, and Surgery Team (COAST)is a collaborative group of clinicians and researchers from the PGSSC and the Center for Surgery and Public Health. The group aims to address the challenging intersection of the high volume of global greenhouse gas emissions created by the healthcare sector (to which surgical care disproportionately contributes) with the need to massively scale up surgical services and access worldwide.
In November 2021, Dr. Michelle Joseph (Principal Investigator), ARC senior fellows (Co-investigators), and Boston Children’s Hospital Decolonizing Global Health Leads (Co-investigators) were awarded the inaugural American College of Surgeons Board of Regents Innovative Grant for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Anti-racism. This grant was used to develop the ARC-S – Anti-Racism Curriculum for Surgical residents/fellows – piloted at the Harvard-affiliated Surgery Programs based at Massachusetts General Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Boston Children’s Hospital. The curriculum will be delivered over three 1-hour sessions at each facility between July and November 2022.
Global Neurosurgery Lab (GNS)
In response to the unmet neurosurgical burden, the PGSSC at Harvard Medical School created the Global Neurosurgery (GNS) Initiative in 2018. This past year the GNS Initiative has evolved into the GNS lab, focusing on research, policy, and advocacy within the context of global neurosurgery. Prior research from our group has produced metrics about the global burden of neurosurgical pathologies and has also provided estimates about the global neurosurgical workforce density. Previous policy work includes the creation of the “Comprehensive Policy Recommendations for Head and Spine Injury Care in Low- and Middle-Income Countries” and the “Comprehensive Policy Recommendations for the Management of Spina Bifida & Hydrocephalus in Low- and Middle-income Countries”. In addition, the GNS Initiative collaborates with a wide range of organizations, such as the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies (WFNS) and the National Institute for Health Research Global Health Research Group on Neurotrauma.
STAR (Surgery and Trauma Advocacy and Research) cluster
In response to the proliferation of trauma registries and NSOAPs in the post-Lancet Commission on Global Surgery era, the PGSSC launched the STAR Cluster with the aim to be (1) a hub for the development, maintenance, and evaluation of trauma registries worldwide and (2) a PGSSC base for mixed methods evaluation of the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery. It meets bimonthly to host forums for expert speakers in a lecture format, as well as research-focus sessions to discuss research proposals.