March 14, 2023
In late February, ACS President E. Christopher Ellison, MD, FACS, MAMSE, met with colleagues during the ACS Egypt Chapter meeting and subsequent Ain Shams University Medical Congress in Cairo. Dr. Ellison described the Egypt Chapter as “vibrant and innovative,” and provided the following report about his experience:
I recently visited the ACS Egypt Chapter. It was an amazing meeting in many regards, outlined below. I was the guest of Dr. Mohey Elbanna, an ACS Governor and professor at Ain Shams University, and Dr. Alaa Ismail, President of the Egypt Chapter. I met many surgeons and trainees and was impressed by the work they are doing and their commitment to serving the needs of the people of Egypt.
The Egypt Chapter was founded in 2011. There are 122 members, with 79 being general surgeons and the others equally represented across all the surgical specialties. They have 5-10 initiates per year. They shared with me that the current challenges the chapter faces include:
Similar to the US, there is a shortage of physicians and surgeons in Egypt. Although specialization is very common, there is a commitment by all to provide for the needs of the people by making possible ready access to elective and emergency surgical services.
In all, there were 29 lectures in a day and a half. The major topics included esophageal and foregut surgery, colon and rectal surgery, trauma, professionalism, ethics, and a focus on quality and innovation.
This was a unique meeting in that it was held in conjunction with the Ain Shams University Medical Congress. The first session immediately followed the chapter meeting and included updates on transplantation, breast, and endocrine surgery. The president of Ain Shams University, Professor Mohamed El-Meteni, is a transplant surgeon; the dean of the School of Medicine, Professor Ali El-Anwar, is a general surgeon and an ACS Fellow.
Professor Hisham Wagdy, chair of the Department of Surgery at Ain Shams University, gave a lecture on the Golden Hour of Trauma. In Cairo, a major challenge is the time it takes getting the injured patient to the nearest hospital due to traffic congestion. There is not a gradation of trauma centers into Level I, II, and III.
A major initiative of the chapter is increasing the number of Advanced Trauma Life Support® (ATLS) providers. They are working to sustain the evolution of ATLS, understanding that this is the key for delivery of high-quality and evidence-based trauma care. As a result of a partnership between the Ain Shams University and the support of Dr. Ossama I. Mansour, vice-dean of Postgraduate Studies and Research and professor of otolaryngology, an ATLS Instructors Course was recently completed. With more instructors, the chapter wishes to increase the number of ATLS providers, beginning with a course on March 15, 2023.
In attendance were many trainees and students from across Egypt and Eastern Africa. I met students interested in surgery from Ethiopia, Sudan, and Eritea. It was clear that a major priority for the chapter is young trainees and surgeons not only from Egypt but also throughout Africa. Clearly, the future is bright for surgery in this part of the world.
Christopher Ellison, MD, FACS, MAMSE