Enhancing medical students’ education and careers in global surgery

Enhancing medical students’ education and careers in global surgery

Can J Surg 2014;57(4)224-25 | PDF

Alexandre Gosselin-Tardif, MD*; Guillaume Butler-Laporte, MD*; Melina Vassiliou, MD, MEd†; Kosar Khwaja, MD, MBA, MSc†; Georges Ntakiyiruta, MD‡; Patrick Kyamanywa, MD, MPH‡; Tarek Razek, MD†; Dan L. Deckelbaum, MD, MPH†

From the *Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, Montréal, Que., †McGill University Health Centre, Center for Global Surgery, Montréal, Que., and the ‡National University of Rwanda, Department of Surgery, Kigali, Rwanda


With surgical conditions being significant contributors to the global burden of disease, efforts aimed at increasing future practitioners’ understanding, interest and participation in global surgery must be expanded. Unfortunately, despite the increasing popularity of global health among medical students, possibilities for exposure and involvement during medical school remain limited. By evaluating student participation in the 2011 Bethune Round Table, we explored the role that global surgery conferences can play in enhancing this neglected component of undergraduate medical education. Study results indicate high rates of student dissatisfaction with current global health teaching and opportunities, along with high indices of conference satisfaction and knowledge gain, suggesting that global health conferences can serve as important adjuncts to undergraduate medical education.

Accepted for publication Nov. 7, 2013

Competing interests: G. Ntakiyiruta and P. Kyamanywa have received travel support from McGill University Health Centre. T. Razek is a board member (unpaid) for the Canadian Network for International Surgery. No other competing interests declared.

DOI: 10.1503/cjs.027713

Correspondence to: D.L. Deckelbaum, McGill University Health Centre, Centre for Global Surgery, Montreal QC; dan.deckelbaum@mcgill.ca