DESERT HOT SPRINGS, Calif., April 19, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Access to healthcare is a local problem and a global problem. The two come together for Walter D. Johnson, MD, president of the Angel View Board of Directors. Since 2014, Dr. Johnson, a neurosurgeon, has been on various special assignments to the World Health Organization (WHO). They have led him to the Congo, Mongolia, and Switzerland.
Since August 2015, he has served as head of the WHO's Emergency and Essential Surgical Care (EESE) Program in Geneva. The EESE Program was established to take the lead in efforts to reduce global surgical burdens.
"Our goal is to develop surgical care in low and middle income countries around the world," Dr. Johnson explains. "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 2 billion people still have no access to basic surgical care.
Similar disparities in health services exist in the Coachella Valley among various segments of the population, noted Henry Kotzen, acting president of Angel View. "While Dr. Johnson was serving as our board vice president, we started a new program, Angel View Outreach, to address gaps in services experienced by local families raising children with disabilities," Kotzen explained. "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 Dr. Johnson's is addressing in his work for the World Health Organization."
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 explained.
Locally, families raising children with disabilities typically must travel to Loma Linda for specialty pediatric care. For East Valley families, that's a 170-mile roundtrip many make frequently. To help alleviate the financial burden and ensure children with disabilities are seen regularly by their physicians, Angel View offers mileage reimbursement for miles traveled accessing specialty pediatric care.
For more information visit: www.AngelView.org.
SOURCE Angel View