​​Centre for Global Surgery​​


AfroSurg 3 Conference: Grassroots Advocacy to Enhance Equitable Surgical Care in Rural Africa  
Dates: 28-29 September 2022

Day 1: 28 September 2022 

Session 1- Surgical Care in Rural Africa

Moderator: Dr. Barnabas Alayande, University of Global Health Equity, Rwanda

8:00-8:30 Registration and Coffee 
8:30-8:45  Introduction to AfroSurg 
8:45-9:00  Rural orthopaedic experience in Zambia
9:00-9:20  Surgical/Obstetrics Care in the Rural Community in South Africa 
9:20-9:40  Anesthesia in the Rural community 
9:40-10:00  Role of Family Medicine in Surgery 
10:00-10:20  BREAK 
10:20-10:40  Innovation to Improve Referrals/supervision for RDH 
10:40-11:00  Rural Surgery Diploma 
11:00-12:00  Discussion 
Lunch 12:00-1​3:00  ​

Session 2 - Grassroots advocacy to Enhance Equitable Surgical Care

Moderator: Ms. Lynn Bust, Stellenbosch University, SA

13:00-13:20 Patients as change agents/community grassroots advocacy 
13:20-13:40 Successful Community Activism: The Case of HIV/AIDs 
13:40-14:00 Enhancing the agency of activists, academics, and community leaders in the advocacy for surgical care 
14:00-14:20  Global Surgery as an Effective Global Health Network 
14:20-14:40  BREAK 
14:40-16:50  Discussion: How can the Community Participate in the Global Surgery Network? 
16:50-17:00  Wrap up 


Day 2: 29 September 2022  

SESSION 3 - Role of Grassroots Advocacy in Political Support for National Obstetric Anaesthesia Surgica​l Plans (NSOAPs)

Ms Irene Dzirasa ,Operation Smile, Ghana

8:00-8:15 Welcome and recap of Day 1 
8:15-12:00 Theory of Change (ToC): Mini workshop 
8:15-8:45 ToC Explanation 
 Vision: Patients and Their Communities Can Improve Political Support for the NSOAP process 
8:45-9:45 Elements Needed to Create Political Support 
10:15-10:45  BREAK 
10:45-11:20 Knowledge Gaps to Create Political Support 
11:50-12:00 Summary and Way Forward 
Lunch 12:00-13:00  ​

SESSION 4- The Role of the Community and the Patient in Improving Rural Surgery   

Moderator: Dr. Shingai Nyaguse, University of Zimbabwe

13:00-13:20 Role of Community Based Organisations  
13:20-13:40 An NGO based Community Health Worker Model for Screening and Referral of Surgical Conditions 
13:40-14:00 Role of Community Health Workers in Surgical Care 
14:00-14:20 Patient Facing Apps for Navigating Surgical Care 
14:20-14:40  BREAK 
14:40-14:50 Group Photo 
14:50-15:10 Traditional Bone Setters in Ghana 
15:10-15:30 Community Ambulances in Rwanda 
15:30-16:30  Discussion 
16:00-16:45 Wrap up and adjourn 

Diabetes management community workshop


South Africa has a high prevalence of diabetes mellitus. Lower limb amputation is a devastating complication of diabetes, associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Patients' education and knowledge are crucial for the self-management of diabetes in order to achieve better health outcomes. Findings from our research showed a significant lack of knowledge of diabetes and its management as well as the measures of preventing complications, specifically lower limb amputation in rural Eastern Cape. In response, a training programme on diabetes management and foot examination was organised for 11 community care providers in rural Eastern Cape, in collaboration with an NGO, One to One Africa. The training took place from 13th to 14th January 2022, facilitated by an experienced diabetes educator and Dr Owolabi, the project lead. It is anticipated that these few trainees will translate the knowledge acquired to the other community care providers in their organization. Lastly, the community care providers are expected to incorporate these diabetes management teachings during their usual home visits to the community members. Over time, we hope to track the impact of the training on the level of diabetes knowledge and self-care abilities of the community members and possibly on the healthcare system in terms of complications screenings and detection rate.

AfroSurg Collaboration: A Zimbabwean and South African capacity building seminar

AfroSurg Seminar.jpg

The Centre hosted a 3-day research capacity building session with Dr. Shingai Nyaguse-Chiurunge, an anaesthetist and policy advocate for surgery in Zimbabwe. Dr. Nyaguse-Chiurunge was a critical member of a team in Zimbabwe that assessed surgical capacity in public sector hospitals nationally. The goal of the seminar was to strengthen her research capacity. Over the course of three days, several topics were recovered such as data analysis, interpretation of results, journal article presentation and writing, and reference management. These critical skills are much needed in order to disseminate knowledge at the global level, such as through publication in peer-reviewed journal articles. The results from this research are also intended to inform life-saving surgical capacity strengthening initiatives in Zimbabwe. The collaborative session further strengthened ties between CGS and the Zimbabwean National Surgical, Obstetric, and Anaesthesia Plan (NSOAP) task team. Enhancing partnerships in the Southern African region will contribute towards improving surgical care for all, an important component of universal health coverage.​

AfroSurg 2 conference

AS2.jpgAfroSurg2 which was held May 4-5, 2021 in Cape Town focused on improving surgical care in Southern Africa through district hospital (DH) Strengthening. The first day focused on South Africa with an opening by the chief operating officer of the Western Cape Provincial Department of Health, Dr. Saadiq Kariem, who emphasised the importance of surgical care in the Western Cape followed by presentations on DH surgical capacity, telemedicine DH solutions, South Africa NSOAP progress, the College of Medicine of South Africa support for DH surgical training, family physicians and their role in DH surgery.

The second day focused on the Southern African region. Five of six AfroSurg countries conducted some mapping of available surgical resources and most have shown a significant lack of human and physical resources for surgical care. A health system strengthening talk emphasised the need to improve surgical services within the larger context of the larger health system and to consider the WHO building blocks of governance, health workforce, service delivery, health information systems, access to essential medicines and financing.

The AfroSurg collaborative has been highly successful at networking surgical stakeholders to improve surgical care in Southern Africa. Baseline data on DH surgical capacity from all countries has been partially collected but more complete information is needed in order to lobby policymakers to improve decentralised service delivery. AfroSurg has several publications but more research capacity building is needed for its members.​


AfroSurg Conferen​ce: “AfroSurg: A Network to Improve Equitable Access to Safe and Timely Surgical Care in Southern Africa​


The initial AfroSurg Networking conference was held on the 16-17th of January 2020, at Stellenbosch University, in Cape Town, South Africa. The conference representatives consisted of 44 key stakeholders from Botswana, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom including surgeons across various fields, anesthesiologists, anthropologists, rural doctors, medical students, public health specialists and research fellows.

The overarching goal of the conference was to establish the network as a collaborative partnership to improve surgical care in the southern African region.

By identifying gaps in knowledge and prioritising research directions, the network will for the first time create regional recommendations for stronger surgical systems an important component of universal health coverage.


Research Opportu​n​ities​

We offer short term research opportunities for undergraduates and medical students. Please contact us​ for more information.

Rese​arch Fellows
We offer 1-2-year research fellowships and post-doctoral positions. We welcome all candidates interested in global surgery, including surgical post-graduates and global health researchers. Please contact us​ for more information.

International Clinica​l Clerks​​hip

For those interested in a clinical rotation at Tygerberg Academic Hospital, please contact:
Prof. Elmin Steyn, Head of the Division of General Surgery
+27 21 938 9567 ​​