ReSurge International and International Medical Corps are partnering to address a global burn crisis in which severe burns affect nearly seven million people a year – particularly impoverished women and children – in developing countries. The partnership will leverage ReSurge’s 42-year history of serving burn survivors in vulnerable communities through reconstructive surgery, with International Medical Corps’ health care and training expertise over nearly three decades in more than 65 countries. With financial support from Ronald McDonald House Charities® and future funders, ReSurge International and International Medical Corps will build and scale-up burn prevention, health care and training services in underserved communities worldwide, beginning with a flagship program in Nepal.
“More women are severely burned each year than are diagnosed with HIV and tuberculosis combined,” said Susan W. Hayes, President & CEO of ReSurge International. “Burns are a neglected global health crisis that can easily be prevented and treated through simple surgery that corrects disabling injuries and saves countless lives.”
To mark National Burn Awareness Week, February 5-12, International Medical Corps and ReSurge International call attention to the staggering scope of burns on vulnerable communities worldwide and the simple solutions available to prevent and treat this global health crisis.
Women in developing countries who use open flames for cooking, heat and light are particularly at risk of severe burns, yet also lack access to adequate medical care. Severe burns leave survivors with disabilities that cost more than $80 billion a year in lost wages and skills; 95 percent of that economic burden occurs in developing countries, adversely affecting economic and social development where it is most needed.
What’s more, burn injuries needlessly cause permanent disabilities due to a lack of medical care. Burn victims often are stigmatized and shunned, hindering their ability to be productive citizens. In some cases, burns also represent a human rights issue, especially for women and girls in South Asia where fire and acid attacks are used to brutally disfigure them.
In Nepal and many countries around the world, International Medical Corps and ReSurge International will create burn prevention programs, increase access to medical care for burn survivors and build local surgical capacity and training programs for burn treatment.
“Vulnerable people without access to adequate health care should not have to suffer with deformities or life-threatening injuries caused by severe burns,” said Rabih Torbay, vice president of International Operations for International Medical Corps. “Through this partnership, we look forward to providing sustainable medical care and education regarding burns to communities worldwide.”
ReSurge International (formerly Interplast) provides free reconstructive surgeries for the poor and builds year-round medical access in underserved areas. It restores the dreams of those with deformities and injuries, and impacts the world by renewing the health of thousands of children and adults each year so they can go to school, provide for their families and contribute to society. For more information or to see video, photos, and beneficiary stories, please visit www.resurge.org. Join us on Facebook and Twitter to learn more.
Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC), a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation, creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well being of children. Through its global network of local Chapters in 54 countries and regions, its three core programs, the Ronald McDonald House®, Ronald McDonald Family Room® and Ronald McDonald Care Mobile®, and millions of dollars in grants to support children’s programs worldwide, RMHC provides stability and resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy. All RMHC-supported programs provide a bridge to quality health care and give children and families the time they need together to heal faster and cope better. For more information, visit www.rmhc.org, follow us on Twitter (@RMHC), or like us on Facebook (Facebook.com/RMHC Global).