Surgical education partnership between FNU and Geelong

The surgical training team from the Colonial War Memorial Hospital (CWMH) and the team from Geelong, Australia with trainee surgeons. Picture: SUPPLIED

Fiji should be proud of the fact that they not only train their own surgeons but help the other Pacific Island nations in the process.

These were the sentiments shared by Geelong’s leading surgeon, Professor Glenn Guest during the Fiji National University (FNU), Surgical Training Program.

Alongside a team of qualified professionals from Melbourne in Australia, Geelong helped trainee surgeons at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital (CWMH) prepare for surgical exams as part of the FNU Surgical Training Program.

The programme provides opportunities for doctors from around the Pacific and East Timor to receive training on the important practice of surgery.

Geelong Team Leader, Professor Glenn Guest said the team has assisted in the teaching of over 100 doctors and have been involved in the training examinations of close to 50 surgeons across the Pacific for 13 years.

“We always feel it is a privilege to come to Fiji and help in some small way,” Prof Guest said.

“Over the last four years, the teachings were assisted by regular online tutorials conducted through Zoom leading up to the exams for about eight to 12 weeks each year.”

“Each year, we leave feeling excited and optimistic that substantial progress is being made. After seeing the calibre of trainees and how hard working and dedicated they are, I feel that the country’s future is in good hands.”

The team from Australia comprises of former FNU graduate and general surgeon with colorectal, endocrine, and global health interest, Sonal Nagra, breast surgeon, Dr Gausihi Sivarajah, and colorectal cancer experts Dr Bushra Othman and Dr Brad Bidwell, who helped provide further teaching opportunities for the Pacific Island trainees.


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