Global Surgery Program Update

global surgery

The MUSC Global Surgery Program fosters innovation on a global scale by connecting some of the brightest medical minds in the developing world with the surgical experience, resources, and proven excellence of the Department of Surgery.

The establishment of a robust global surgery program is critical to MUSC’s ability to compete with elite surgical residency programs across the country. While academic global health programs are not new, most traditionally operate from a nonsurgical research or service-oriented approach. In recent years, there have been numerous calls from global health-minded clinicians to prioritize surgery. Programs in high-income countries typically run by sending their own residents, students, and faculty to healthcare facilities in low- and middle-income countries.By contrast, the new MUSC Global Surgery Program is built on an ethos of bidirectionality.

Since its inception in November 2022, the program has coordinated the joint publication of four book chapters with South African, Kenyan, and Cameroonian co-authors working in concert with our faculty and residents. The Global Surgery Program also hosted an international medical student and several surgeons and dignitaries from other countries. Program Director Mike M. Mallah,M.D., says this is only the beginning. MUSC will send students,residents, and faculty to developing countries, and he hopes MUSC will receive clinicians and students from these countries in return.

The MUSC Global Surgery Program is growing rapidly under the guidance of Mallah and aims to expand educational collaboration opportunities between MUSC and healthcare institutions around the world. In the past few months, the Global Surgery Program has sent students to several new emerging partnership locations, including Kenya, South Africa, and Uzbekistan and continues to work with previous partners at Mbingo Hospital in Cameroon.

With the recent approval of a new international rotation curriculum for fourth-year medical students, these international relationships have significant growth potential. Before clinical trainees get the opportunity to travel abroad, however, the Global Surgery Program will employ course material to inform, expose, and challenge trainees with ideas and information about international healthcare. As the program gains the attention of the students, staff, university, and surrounding community,it aims to introduce the essential nature of surgery in addressing the global burden of disease.


In May, a group of students and physicians from MUSC attended the annual Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons (PAACS) Basic Science Conference in Kenya. PAACS oversees 23 resident training programs across 11 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa.The group conducted three site visits with VCU’s Department of Surgery and PAACS at Kijabe, Litein, and Tenwek Hospitals.The visiting team spoke with surgical residents and observed the workflow of the current case-logging system. During the visits, the MUSC team gained a better understanding of how these hospitals operate and how they leverage limited resources to provide patients with necessary compassionate care. Work from this study is currently being submitted for publication with co-authorship by our African colleagues.