Training surgeons is what will provide a longer-lasting benefit for all.
As a moderator during the April 23 virtual global symposium, “Bridging Continental Divides: Challenges and Opportunities in Head Neck Oncology Practice in Low Resource Settings,” Donald T. Weed, M.D., and colleagues in the American Head and Neck Society explored issues related to the challenges faced by head and neck surgeons in low-resource settings from Haiti to the African continent.
The symposium revealed that Haiti, Uganda, Ghana and Senegal all have common obstacles, such as limited access to operating room time, and challenges unique to each country’s availability of critical resources and infrastructure, according to Dr. Weed.
And it’s work that starts with attempting to address the specific needs of the surgeons in a low-resource setting, and then helping to meet those needs,” he said. “Obviously, patient care is an integral part of that and certainly a benefit of that, but the training of the surgeons and other health care providers is what will provide a longer lasting benefit for all.”
Since 2015, Dr. Weed has traveled one to three times annually to Haiti and a group of healthcare providers from the University of Miami and Thomas Jefferson University to provide extensive training for Patrick Jean Gilles, M.D., a head and neck surgeon, who treats patients and runs the otolaryngology residency program at the Universite d’Etat d’Haiti.