"Building Anaesthesia Training in the ECSA Region" Programme

CANECSA, the College of Surgeons of East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA), the Institute of Global Surgery in the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI), and the College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland (CAI) work together to build the capacity of CANECSA to address the most significant barrier to safe surgery in the region. This programme is funded by the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and aims to provide access to safer and more affordable anaesthesia care for those in need of surgery in the region.

Announcing the programme launch in February 2020, CANECSA President Dr Mpoki Ulisubisya said “There can be no safe surgery without safe anaesthesia, yet the number of professionals in this field is very low compared to the region’s population and its burden of disease. CANECSA aims to advance education, standards, and research in Safe Anaesthesia and Critical Care for the people of East, Central and Southern Africa to significantly scale up anaesthesia service in the region. The unique collaboration of four Irish and African training Colleges will support CANECSA to work towards health equality for all who are affected by current surgical conditions or require surgical and anaesthesia care in the region.”

Existing training models in place are not producing the necessary number of anaesthesiologists required to provide safe anaesthesia care. At present, the shortage is aggravated by the low number of trainers, a lack of formal training for trainers, the cost of training, and the lack of professional prestige associated with their training. Collegiate training through CANECSA has been identified as an important solution to the lack of anaesthesiologists in the region.

CANECSA, COSECSA, CAI and RCSI are working together to establish training sites in the region, develop suitable curricula and hold internationally benchmarked anaesthesia Fellowship exams.