Tribal India Health Foundation's Rural Surgical Initiative (RSI)

Surgery has become an essential service in comprehensive healthcare delivery systems throughout the world, and basic surgical services are important public health interventions in increasing the quality of life for the target population. While emphasis has been placed in providing preventive and curative medical care in rural areas of India, secondary-level surgical care continues to be deficient. Due to a paucity of surgeons, surgical facilities, and instruments, basic injuries, ligations, and excisions are often unable to be managed properly by existing healthcare institutions. The distance to the nearest secondary surgical unit from a rural area is often too far to reach, and places patients in unnecessarily life-threatening situations. 

As such, the Tribal India Health Foundation is in the process of launching the Rural Surgical Initiative (RSI) with the purpose of increasing the quality of surgical care in rural areas of India, beginning with tribal areas of South India. The Foundation aims to fulfill the following under the RSI program:

1) Continue to collect and send surgical supplies, including sutures, pulse oxymeters, gloves, scalpels, etc... to partner tribal health initiatives.

2) Recruit surgeons from the United States on a voluntary basis to assist in providing basic surgical care at partner tribal health initiatives for a short period of time.

3) Secure funds for expansion and development of basic surgical facilities in tribal areas

4) Provide rural surgeons with education materials on the latest developments and methods in basic surgery

5) Ally with rural surgical groups in India to jointly increase the scope and standard of surgical care in rural India


The Foundation invites individuals, organizations, and surgeons to take part in the RSI by:

1) Collecting surgical supplies for partner tribal health initiatives
2) Volunteering to provide surgical services at partner tribal health initiatives for the span of around 2 weeks (surgeons only)

Please contact the Foundation at for more information.