Surgical education at Weill Bugando Medical Centre: supplementing surgical training and investing in local health care providers.

TitleSurgical education at Weill Bugando Medical Centre: supplementing surgical training and investing in local health care providers.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsMitchell KB, Giiti G, Kotecha V, Chandika A, Pryor KO, Härtl R, Gilyoma J
JournalCan J Surg
Date Published2013 Jun
KeywordsAcademic Medical Centers, Curriculum, Developing Countries, Education, Medical, Undergraduate, General Surgery, Health Personnel, Humans, Tanzania

Global surgery initiatives increasingly are focused on strengthening education and local health care systems to build surgical capacity. The goal of this education project was to support local health care providers in augmenting the surgical curriculum at a new medical school, thus promoting long-term local goals and involvement. Working with local surgeons, residents, and medical and assistant medical officer students, we identified the most common surgical conditions presenting to Weill Bugando Medical Centre in Mwanza, Tanzania, and the areas of greatest need in surgical education. We developed an 8-week teaching schedule for undergraduate students and an electronic database of clinical surgery topics. In addition, we started teaching basic surgical skills in the operating theatre, bridging to an official and recurring workshop through a supporting international surgery organization. The medical and assistant medical officer students reported increased satisfaction with their clinical surgery rotations and mastery of key educational subjects. The initiation of an Essential Surgical Skills workshop through the Canadian Network for International Surgery showed students had improved comfort with basic surgical techniques. Short-term surgical missions may appear to fill a void in the shortage of health care in the developing world. However, we conclude that global health resources are more appropriately used through projects giving ownership to local providers and promoting education as a foundation of development. This results in better coordination among local and visiting providers and greater impact on education and long-term growth of health care capacity.

Alternate JournalCan J Surg
PubMed ID23484467
PubMed Central IDPMC3672435