According to the World Health Organization (WHO), road traffic mortality exceeds 1.27 million people annually and is ranked the ninth leading cause of death (WHO 2008) (1). With over 90 percent of road traffic deaths occurring in low- and middle- income countries (1), the global death risk per mileage travelled is highest for powered two-wheelers, pedestrians, or cyclists. (2)
As the number of road traffic and trauma injuries continues to grow in low- and middle-income countries (1), there is a global need for high quality, low cost healthcare equipment.
A pedestrian’s traffic accident and her journey to recovery
On August 15, 2013, a young woman, Nair, became a part of the statistic when she was walking home from work and was hit by a car in her hometown of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Left unconscious by the impact, she woke up in a hospital room at Hospital das Clinicas’ Institute of Orthopedics and Traumatology (IOT) and was told by her doctors and nurses that she needed emergency surgery on her fractured leg.
Watch this video to hear more of Nair’s story:
A global solution meets a global problem
To perform orthopedic surgery on Nair, Hospital das Clinicas used GE Healthcare’s OEC Brivo*, the affordable and mobile surgical C-arm** that enables doctors to generate high-quality images of the affected area at the lowest reasonably achievable dose. As Doctor Kodi Edson Kojima, Coordinator of the Trauma Group at Hospital das Clinicas’ IOT explained, OEC Brivo “helped with intraoperative control in visualizing where the bone fragments were, executing shorter cuts and avoiding further invasion of the fractured area.” He continues, “The smaller invasion during surgery helps reduce risk to the patient, who recovers faster and has a lower risk of complications post-surgery.”
GE’s OEC Brivo line has technology to meet both patient and doctors’ needs. OEC Brivo’s easy maneuverability, seamless connectivity, and quality imaging can help improve workflow and productivity, which could yield better clinical and functional outcomes for both the patient and doctor, respectively.
GE’s latest mobile C-arm comes at the right time. Globally, epidemiologists have predicted an increase in the number of major orthopedic surgeries between 2010 and 2020 in seven major markets (the US, Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK), with an expected increase from approximately 5.3 million surgeries in 2010 to 6.56 million surgeries in 2020. (3)
Particularly in developing countries, there is an increasing need to increase access to quality healthcare that’s also affordable. (4) In 2008, there were 39, 211 deaths due to road traffic injuries that were recorded in Brazil, and that number is expected to increase over time (1).
To address the market and customer needs, GE Healthcare’s Latin America division is taking action locally. In May 2014, the business announced its plans to invest in local production of the OEC Brivo C-arm line (Brivo Essential and Plus***) at Brazil’s Contagem manufacturing facility.
“Not only can the increase in production of surgical C-arms in Brazil help benefit both the country and the Latin American region’s economy, but it can also help healthcare professionals in the region address a critical healthcare need,” said Amanda Baccarini, Chief Marketing Officer of GE Healthcare Surgery. “It is a crucial priority for our business that we make this technology accessible not just to Latin America but to other developing markets as well.”
* GE Healthcare’s OEC Brivo 850
** A mobile C-arm is a medical imaging device that is based on X-ray technology and can be used flexibly in various ORs within a clinic. The name comes from its special, arched, semi-circular design, which connects the X-ray source and X-ray detector to one another.
***Brivo Plus and Brivo Essential are trademarks of the products Brivo OEC 865 and Brivo OEC 785
(1) Chandran, A. et al. (2012). Road traffic deaths in Brazil: Rising trends in pedestrian and
motorcycle occupant deaths. Traffic Injury Prevention, vol 13. Retrieved from
(2) Allianz. (2012). Traffic casualty risks are on the rise. Allianz Risk Pulse, Focus: Mobility and Road
Safety. Retrieved from
(3) Datamonitor. (2011). Epidemiology: Major Orthopedic Surgery – On the rise as the global
elderly population continues to grow. Datamonitor. Retrieved from