AV Board President Walter Johnson MD Named Head of WHO Emergency and Essential Surgery Program
August 24, 2016
“Our goal is to develop surgical care capacity in low and middle income countries around the world,” Dr. Johnson explained. “That’s particularly critical since a recent WHO study found that the volume of surgery has increased globally over the last decade but wide disparities in access persist between rich and poor countries.” According to WHO, some 5 billion people still have no access to safe, timely and affordable surgical care.
Similar disparities in health services exist in the Coachella Valley among various segments of the population, Dr. Johnson notes. Angel View’s Outreach Program was created to address gaps in services experienced by local families raising children with disabilities. Many of those families are very low income and experience the same problems with access to care that WHO has identified on a global basis. “The Coachella Valley is in many ways a microcosm of the issues we’re addressing through the World Health Organization,” Dr. Johnson said.
Many people are unaware that access to surgical care is a population-based, affordability and globally relevant issue. “We’re devoted to leveling the playing field so people in areas with a lack of traditional access will have similar opportunities as people in more developed areas,” Dr. Johnson added.
Timmy spent his childhood baffling the medical community. His digestive issues and seizure activity were so profound, doctors didn’t understand how he could still be alive. His mom devoted herself to medical research and finding a place that could care for her son. Between hospitalizations, he lived in various group homes in New York. At the last one, he had so many injuries his mom sought another solution. They headed west.
Since moving into an Angel View home, Timmy is calmer, more expressive, and has far fewer seizures. He loves the staff, his housemates, our therapy dogs and his word board. He’s so adored by staff, his mother says happily, “Now he has more than one mommy.”