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Question 6#

When considering surgical care in LMICs, "task shifting" is often talked about as a way to provide surgical care while additional surgeons are trained and recruited. What does this term refer to? 

a. Shifting care from rural areas to established centers
b. Training nonsurgeon physicians and midlevel practitioners to provide basic surgical care
c. Establishing a system that allows selected surgical disease to be treated medically
d. Shifting the tasks of surgical care from western medical staff to local staff

Correct Answer is B


Task shifting involves training nonsurgeon physicians, nurses, midwives, and advanced care practitioners to provide basic surgical or anesthetic care. This may be an inevitable fact of life in LMICs and the surgeon shortage is prodigious. Task shifting in this way may allow services that were only available under fully trained surgeons to be more accessible and mitigate the significant surgeon's shortage in many LMICs. Concerns about quality of care, supervision, and the impact on surgeon's professional development remain areas of debate.