5 billion people lack access to surgical, obstetric, and anesthesia care that is safe, timely, and affordable. In 2015 surgery was brought to the forefront of the global health agenda when the World Health Assembly passed Resolution 68.15 on Strengthening Emergency and Essential Surgical Care and Anesthesia as a Component of Universal Health Coverage. In the same year, the World Bank published the third edition of Disease Control Priorities, dedicating its first volume to essential surgical care. Additionally, the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery published Global Surgery 2030, detailing the state of global surgical care and creating targets for the next 15 years. In recognition of the need to improve access to surgery and with the momentum generated by these pivotal events, a number of countries have created National Surgical, Obstetric, and Anesthesia Plans (NSOAPs). With several NSOAPs currently in implementation stages and more in development, a clear plan among the important global stakeholders is needed to improve surgical systems on a larger scale.