We aim to end fistula by 2045


Our vision is to end fistula. To us, this translates into one clear goal: ensure that every woman everywhere can get timely access to quality treatment by 2045. The number of new cases will decline as health systems and economies improve. Our global effort will also help people and their governments prevent this injustice.




We started Operation Fistula to fight injustice.


Fistula is easily preventable. But it still happens every day in the poor parts of the world.

Fistula is also easy and cheap to fix. We’ve known how to do the surgery for 150 years. But nearly every woman who gets fistula will die before she gets a chance at treatment. The voiceless poor suffer indefinitely without hope.

To us, this tragedy is an intolerable injustice and our purpose is seeing it righted.

Our Core Values


Patients are everything.

Each and every action must serve them.

We welcome scrutiny.

Constant criticism drives continuous improvement.

People close to the problem know how to solve it.

We trust local people to find the solutions for their own communities.

Improvement requires measurement.


Increased awareness leads to progress.

We Strive to Improve Every Fistula Effort


No single organization can create large-scale, lasting social change alone.


Our vision requires a break from the typical paradigm of “isolated impact.” In fact, ending fistula by 2045 can only happen as a collective effort.

The health of the fistula treatment ecosystem is supremely important to us. That’s why we’ve started a collective impact effort in obstetric fistula.

We built a tool to bring measurement to fistula care.

GOFER (the Global Obstetric Fistula Electronic Registry) is designed to document and improve every interaction between a fistula patient and her care team across the continuum. We built it to help all other fistula organizations. In addition to transforming the fistula world, we will also capture an unprecedented view of gender inequity from the systematic failures that produce the most marginalized women in the world.

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We designed a new way to reach the women who need us most.


Funding doesn’t reach the people with the greatest needs. It also doesn’t get to the people doing the work. We gave grants to surgeons as they provided evidence of quality care. The results proved an innovative and cost-effective way to leverage funding.


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