alexa International Association for Ambulatory Surgery (IAAS)

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International Association for Ambulatory Surgery (IAAS)

The International Association for Ambulatory Surgery (IAAS) was founded in 1995 and is a registered charity in Belgium. Its main aim is to promote the worldwide development of high quality ambulatory surgery (aka: day surgery). In pursuit of this, the IAAS has had a number of achievements. Even before its formal inception, the founding member countries started the publication of the first international peer reviewed journal on ambulatory surgery. The foundation of the IAAS coincided with its first international congress in Brussels. Since then biennial congresses have been held at different venues around the world. The IAAS has also been involved in promoting the practice of ambulatory surgery at many national conferences in Europe, North and South America, Australasia, Asia and Africa. Politically, the IAAS has lobbied organizations such as the European Union, the World Health Organisation, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, national governments, etc. on the benefits and management of ambulatory surgery. An example of this work is the booklet Policy Brief - Day Surgery: Making it Happen published in 2007 by the World Health Organization on behalf of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies in collaboration with the IAAS. As a consequence of these activities the number of national ambulatory surgery associations has increased as has the amount of ambulatory surgery performed in most countries. This is clearly shown in the regular two yearly international benchmarking exercises the Association undertakes.

IAAS Mission is to promote the worldwide development and growth of high quality ambulatory surgery (day surgery). Day surgery has proven itself to be a high-quality, safe and cost-effective approach to surgical health care. In this light, IAAS members work together to carry out this mission free of partisan spirit and prejudice and are committed to the values of solidarity and equity of access to healthcare.


IAAS members advocate for:

  • Health policies that encourage the development of ambulatory surgery as a safe and high quality model of care;
  • Health financing mechanisms and reimbursement schemes that do not hinder the development of ambulatory surgery;
  • Harmonization of information systems based on a set of common indicators that allow benchmarking both at the European and International level.





IAAS believes that:

  • All individuals must have access to safe and quality health care services;
  • Reduction of hospital costs and development of ambulatory surgery free-up resources enabling better overall health coverage and a reduction of health inequalities within the same country and between countries;
  • Benchmarking both in terms of volume and clinical outcomes is an effective way to promote further development of quality and safety;
  • Dissemination of information and exchange of good practices are a key factor to creating synergy and reducing disparities;
  • IAAS initiatives are guided by the spirit of collaboration between member associations and of solidarity with the less wealthy situations and therefore the IAAS is committed to implementing the various tasks on a volunteer basis.
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