ESSENTIAL SURGERY TRAINING
ANY OF US COULD REQUIRE SURGERY, AT ANY TIME, FOR ANY NUMBER OF REASONS.
Five billion people worldwide lack access to safe surgery: procedures that address a wide spectrum of illnesses, injuries and conditions
across all demographics. If they were more widely available— essential surgical procedures would prevent 1.5 million deaths a year.
To combat this staggering deficit, Physicians for Peace trains junior surgeons and surgical staff members at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi, and funds surgery/ anesthesiology scholarships for local medical residents.
BUT ONLY A THIRD OF US CAN GET IT.
OUR PROGRAM IN MALAWI
Malawi has a population of 19 million—
similar to New York State.
While New York has more than 4,400 surgeons and anesthesiologists (each) to serve its population, Malawi has only 65 surgeons and 10 anesthesiologists in the country.
We partnership with Malawi's largest referral and teaching facility, Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH), to train their surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, and residents.
patients have been evaluated in Malawi by Physicians for Peace surgical educators and trainees.
Malawian surgical providers were trained during teaching surgeries last year.
instructional surgeries are performed each week in our Malawi Teaching Operaring Theatre.
hours of hands-on training have been invested by our volunteer surgical educators in Malawi.
OUR APPROACH TO TRAINING
GENERAL SURGERY TRAININGS
We partnership with Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH), and the College of Medicine (COM) of Malawi, utilizing local curriculum of the college of South, East, Central & Southern Africa (COSECSA).
To conduct these trainings, our volunteer surgeons travel to Blantyre, Malawi to serve as visiting members of the Surgical Department at QECH and assist with surgical training efforts for a minimum of a three-month period. During their visit, our volunteers work closely with the Malawi registrars (equivalent to a resident in the US), as well as interns, medical students, and clinical officers, teaching practical skills that can be used immediately, growing the abilities and confidence of the local staff for sustained quality improvement.
SUPPORT OF AN OPERATING THEATRE AT QECH
To support our surgical training program in Malawi, we maintain an operating room (OR) at Queen Elizabeth Hospital dedicated to these general surgery training activities.
PFP directly supports the staffing of this dedicated teaching OR, including nurses, anesthesia and surgical clinical officers. This OR is utilized by our volunteer surgeons during their 3-month rotation as visiting faculty, as well as by local surgical providers according to the surgical volume of the hospital. On average, 78 general surgery teaching cases are completed in the PFP supported OR each month for junior registrars.
This program’s dedicated operating room maximizes both the number of surgical procedures possible, and the essential training needed.
SCHOLARSHIPS FOR RESIDENTS IN SURGERY AND ANESTHESIA
Our PFP Scholars Program provides scholarships for Malawian doctors specializing in surgery and anesthesia to train within their home country to meet the tremendous need, both present and future.
The PFP Scholars Program is a multi-year commitment in support of training future surgeons and anesthesiologists in Malawi. Currently, two surgery and three anesthesia scholars are part of the program.
INVESTMENT IN TECHNOLOGY
Investment in internet connection links Malawian clinicians with clinical care and educational innovations that have previously been available only in high income countries.
, It is essential for online exams that are requisite in the regionally based surgical and anesthesia colleges, COSECSA and CANECSA. Using technology in the operating room, surgical skills lab, classroom, radiology lab, Zoom courses, and consults with colleagues in rural district hospitals provides the potential to reach resources within and beyond Malawi’s borders.
Weekly didactic training sessions are facilitated by IMEs and other faculty at QECH, with additional IMEs participating remotely through Zoom. The sessions follow the local surgical curriculum and are designed to be interactive and case study-focused to build innovative idea sharing and critical thinking skills, along with clinical and theoretical concepts.
Our team in Malawi help us to coordinate the various arms of programming at QECH and to expand educational opportunities.
PFP Program Coordinator
PFP Education Coordinator