Roadmap for design of surgical equipment for safe surgery worldwide

R. M. Oosting, J. Dankelman, L. S.G.L. Wauben, J. Madete, R. S. Groen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
58 Downloads (Pure)


Safe and affordable surgery is not accessible for five billion people when they need it. Multiple surgical capacity studies have shown that hospitals in low-And-middle income countries do not have complete coverage of basic surgical equipment such as, theatre lights, anesthesia machines and electro surgical units. Currently, almost all equipment is designed and manufactured with a main focus on the context in high income countries. The context in low-And-middle income countries in which surgical equipment is used, differs from high income countries, especially in terms of financial resources and access to maintenance, spare parts and consumables. The aim of this study is to present a roadmap for design of surgical equipment for worldwide use. The roadmap consists of four phases: before the start of a design project a clear need for certain surgical equipment should be identified (Phase 0). During Phase 1 the context should be researched thoroughly by determining the barriers encountered by patients to surgical care, the structure of the health care system and if the aspects required for safe surgery are in place. In Phase 2 the implementation strategy and design requirements should be determined and in phase 3 prototyping starts in close interaction with local end-users. We believe that designers should strive for design that is of the same quality and complies with the same safety regulations as equipment designed for HICs. In this way user and patient safety can be assured in any setting worldwide. And we advocate for surgical equipment that fits the context optimally and that will be applicable in comparable settings globally.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference (GHTC 2018)
EditorsEd Perkins, Silvia Figueira
Place of PublicationPiscataway, NJ, USA
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5386-5566-5
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventGHTC 2018 - 8th IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference - San Jose, United States
Duration: 18 Oct 201821 Oct 2018


ConferenceGHTC 2018 - 8th IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference
Abbreviated titleGHTC 2018
CountryUnited States
CitySan Jose
Internet address

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project

Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • biomedical engineering
  • design
  • Low-And-Middle Income Countries (LMICs)
  • Surgery
  • surgical equipment


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