The surgical burden in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) is immense. Despite the increase in resources invested in surgical outreach trips to LMIC, there is no consistent process for understanding the needs of the site and for preparing the necessary resources to deliver care. Given the importance and lack of a comprehensive and standardized needs assessment tool, we aimed to create a tool that assesses the needs and capacity of a site to inform site selection and expectations and improve quality of care.We used methodological triangulation, a technique that incorporates multiple and different types of data collection methods to study a phenomenon. We used 2 standardized World Health Organization (WHO) tools to develop a hand surgery-specific needs assessment tool. We then identified missing items and made refinements as a result of field testing at 2 facilities and qualitative analysis of semistructured interviews of hand surgeons with international outreach experience. Interviews were coded and analyzed using conductive content analysis. Key concepts explored included domains and subdomains pertaining to essential considerations prior to a hand surgery outreach trip.Current generic needs assessment tools do not capture all necessary domains and subdomains for a hand surgery outreach trip. The WHO tools provide a framework for reference and foundation; field testing and qualitative interviews identified hand surgery-specific items. We developed a tool (https://sustainableglobalsurgery.org/research%2Ftools) that includes 7 domains: (1) human resources; (2) physical resources; (3) procedures; (4) cultural and language barriers; (5) safety, quality, and access; (6) regulation and cost; and (7) knowledge transfer and teaching and associated subdomains relevant to hand surgery.A hand surgery-specific standardized needs assessment tool may ensure appropriate resources and personnel are deployed for outreach trips to improve site selection, expectation setting, and quality of care.A needs assessment tool is a standardized, comprehensive tool to assess the needs and capacity of a new site prior to hand surgery outreach trips to improve site selection, expectation setting, and delivery of high-quality, safe, and effective care in LMIC.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jhsa.2020.04.014
View details for PubMedID 32561162