A Nationwide Assessment of Pediatric Surgical Capacity in Mongolia

Laura F. Goodman, Erdenetsetseg Chuluun, Burmaa Sanjaa, Sanchin Urjin, Sarnai Erdene, Narantuya Khad, Adiyasuren Jamiyanjav, Jacob Stephenson, Diana L Farmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Mongolia is a country characterized by its vast distances and extreme climate. An underdeveloped medical transport infrastructure makes patient transfer from outlying regions dangerous. Providing pediatric surgical care locally is crucial to improve the lives of children in the countryside. This is the first structured assessment of nationwide pediatric surgical capacity. Methods: Operation rates were calculated using data from the Mongolian Center for Health Development and population data from the Mongolian Statistical Information Service. The Pediatric Personnel, Infrastructure, Procedures, Equipment, and Supplies (PediPIPES) survey tool was used to collect data at all survey sites. Descriptive data analyses were completed using Excel. Studies of association were completed using Stata. All reported percentages are of the hospitals outside of the capital (n = 21). Results: All provincial hospitals have general surgeons; seven (33.3%) of them have pediatric surgeon(s). One facility has no anesthesiologist. All facilities perform basic procedures and provide anesthesia. Four (19%) can treat common congenital anomalies. All facilities have basic operating room equipment. Nine hospitals do not have pulse oximetry available. Twelve hospitals do not have pediatric surgical instruments always available. Pediatric supplies are lacking. Conclusions: Provincial hospitals in Mongolia can perform basic procedures. However, essential pediatric supplies are lacking. Consequently, certain life-saving procedures are not available to children outside of the capital. Only a few improvements would be amendable to low-cost process improvement adjustment, and the majority of needs require resource additions. Procedure, equipment, and supply availability should be further explored to develop a comprehensive nationwide pediatric surgical program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalWorld Journal of Surgery
StateAccepted/In press - Apr 4 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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