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70 International Surgeons Trained in Marathon Surgery Week

Collaborations between Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital and the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Colorectal Division resulted in 24 successful complex surgeries taking place during last week’s Cape Town Colorectal Week. 

This partnership, which has been on-going for many years, is committed to spreading knowledge and expertise regarding colorectal operations internationally. It resulted in 70 delegates from 22 countries being trained in this specific field at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital between 22 and 25 April 2013.

“The need for this training among African surgeons was evident during a colorectal course hosted by the Hospital last year which showed that paediatric colorectal surgical services were neglected due to lack of expertise,” said Prof Alp Numanoglu, the head of the surgical department at the hospital. “Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is known for introducing many firsts for paediatrics in South Africa such as the first liver transplant service and the separation of conjoined twins. Now, with the recent developments and upgrades within the hospital it can be seen as a resource centre for the training of African surgeons.”

On Sunday 21 April, a special outpatient’s clinic was conducted to identify cases and plan for the upcoming week. During the week, 24 children from all over the country underwent colorectal surgery. The surgeries took place in three theatres simultaneously, over four days. 

A live digital broadcast to the hospital’s lecture theatre gave delegates the opportunity to view the surgeries live and interact with surgeons operating during the training sessions. 

Professor Numanoglu said: “Colorectal Week could not have been possible without the help and dedication of the nursing sisters in the pre- and post-op wards. The power of collective giving has touched the lives of many and will continue to do so by the people who had the opportunity to be trained at the congress”.


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