Country Information

Bangladesh has about 163 million people (WHO,2016) living in an area of 147, 570 square kilometres. The current health sector program gives special emphasis to vulnerable groups, with a focus on delivering services to people living in poverty. Bangladesh’s national life expectancy is 71 years for males and 74 years for females (WHO,2016) with an infant mortality rate of 30/1000 live births (WHO,2018).  Burns incidence in Bangladesh is more than double compared to developed countries and research conducted by the Centre for Injury Prevention and Research in Bangladesh (CIPRB) has determined burns to be the second biggest cause of disability in Bangladeshi children after falls – 474 children are injured and nine children acquire a disability from burns injuries each day.

Program History

Interplast commenced its programs in Bangladesh in 2004, following an invitation from the Department of Plastic Surgery at Dhaka Medical College (DMC). Programs initially focused around provision of advanced reconstructive surgical services, and capacity building activities to improve the number and skills of plastic and reconstructive surgeons in Bangladesh. Currently this surgical capacity building focuses on advanced microsurgery.

Interplast previously worked with the Centre for Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP) to build local capacity around hand therapy with the goal of improving access to appropriate therapy for Bangladeshi patients. As CRP staff now retain the required knowledge and skills to treat burn injuries, Interplast looks for CRP to share their acquired knowledge
with fellow allied health therapists in Bangladesh.

From 2008, Interplast commenced working in partnership with the Centre for Injury Prevention and Research, Bangladesh (CIPRB, ‘the centre’) to deliver Emergency Management of Severe Burns training, in partnership with the Australia and New Zealand Burns Association (ANZBA). This program continues, with the Bangladeshi course faculty running the workshops locally, with minimal external support.

Interplast also works in partnership with the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA) to deliver Essential Pain Management workshops throughout Bangladesh, in partnership with the Bamgabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University through the Bangladeshi Society for Study of Pain.

Interplast has also supported a number of other projects in Bangladesh, including working with the Acid Survivor’s Foundation to develop a pressure-garment manufacturing project.

Current Programs

In the 2019/20 period, Interplast will continue to support its local partners in Bangladesh through supporting plastic and reconstructive surgeons and allied health professionals to join in regional training opportunities being delivered in Nepal. Interplast has also partnered with the Centre for Injury Prevention and Research, Bangladesh (CIPRB) to deliver Emergency Management of Severe Burns training, and has supported the delivery of ongoing Emergency Pain Management training for Bangladeshi anaesthetists.

Interplast also joined the inauguration of the new Sheikh Hasina Institute for Burns and Plastic Surgery hospital in late 2018 – a state of the art facility which will be the largest burns and plastic surgery hospital in the world.

During this visit, the Interplast team also met with several local partners to review program activities and plan for new opportunities in the coming year, including new projects focused on physiotherapy training and supporting the local manufacturing of pressure garments for burns treatment.

Keep an eye on the Calendar of Program Activities for more details, or get in touch with us.