Health Economist, Bryony Dawkins, facilitated a parallel session titled “Health Economic Evaluation in LMICs: What are the challenges and possible solutions?”. The hour long session offered an introduction to economic evaluation of healthcare followed by a discussion of the complexities of undertaking such evaluations in LMICs where health systems are often made up of many providers and funded from many sources. Surgical trainees and GHRG partners developed new understanding of what health economics is and how it can be used to provide evidence to healthcare decision makers. They worked together to identify the different perspectives to be included in an economic evaluation in this setting and to think about where benefits and costs associated with healthcare fall across different groups. At the end, a group lead summarised the discussion and presented the findings to the wider conference audience.
Professor Julia Brown, facilitated a parallel session titled “Challenges in the delivery of clinical trials in LMICs’. The hour-long session offered an interactive introduction to clinical trials and then a discussion on the barriers/challenges in the design/delivery of clinical trials research from the participants perspectives. The session was well attended by surgical trainees and GHRG partners. Challenges were identified as community distrust of hospital care, cultural resistance to research, lack of clinical trial knowledge and awareness amongst patients and clinicians, finance and lack of motivation. At the end, a group lead summarised and presented the findings to the wider conference audience.
On behalf of the Nuffield Centre for International Health, our GHRG colleague, Dr. Amrit Virk, facilitated a parallel session titled “How to do health systems analysis in low-resource settings?”. The hour-long session offered an introduction to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) “building blocks” framework for assessing health systems. The session was well attended by surgical trainees and GHRG partners. Participants worked in 3 groups, each choosing a specific health system element—namely governance, medical products and health workforce, and reflected on the barriers and facilitators within each for improving surgical care in Sierra Leone. At the end, a group lead summarised and presented the findings to the wider conference audience.
On 19th November 2019, GHRG-ST travelled to Bagalkot in India to attend the 27th Annual National Conference of Association of Rural Surgeons of India (ARSI) and 8th International Conference of International Federation of Rural Surgery (IFRS).
During the conference, GHRG-ST delivered 2 workshops on Gas Insufflation Less Laparoscopic Surgery (GILLS). The first workshop took place on Thursday and was for GHRG-ST invited faculty and senior members of ARSI only for participants to trial the new RAIS equipment, bellowscope and lap pack through hands on feedback and one to one discussions with researchers on each of the projects.
The second workshop was delivered as part of the main ARSICON programme. Delegates signed up to the workshop prior to the conference with a maximum of 20 participants. During this session the current GILLS equipment was showcased through a cadaveric session, plus the new innovations were available for participants to have a look at. Both workshops were very well received by all and we have received feedback to refine designs on the innovations.
On Friday the team presented work we have undertaken in India over the past 2 1/2 years. Presentations from GHRG-ST included the TARGET training programme and GILLS registry and surgical innovations including the RAIS equipment, bellowscope and lappack. After the presentations the team were presented with a token on appreciation from ARSICON.
On Monday 11th November 2019, GHRG-ST held our 3rd Annual Symposium at the Hill Valley Hotel in Freetown, Sierra Leone.
The symposium showcased the work we have undertaken since July 2017, when the group was formed, in both Sierra Leone and North East India, as well as presentations from local researchers and our in country partner, CapaCare. We had over 50 delegates in attendance on the day. The meeting brought together surgical trainees, medical officers, house officers, consultants, registrars, students and policymakers plus our team from the UK which included consultants, researchers and clinical fellows.
During the symposium we held parallel sessions which were focused on:
How do we conduct health systems in low resource setting
The challenges of delivering clinical trials in the low resource setting
Health economics evaluation in LMICs: What are the challenges and possible solutions.
The sessions were run by experts from the GHRG-ST team in each area, Professor Julia Brown, Dr Amrit Virk and Ms Bryony Dawkins. Discussions from each session were presented to the meeting.
The meeting closed with networking and a buffet dinner, during this time our engineers showcased our low cost innovations for use in the low resource setting.
Leeds hosted The Global Anaesthesia, Surgery & Obstetric Collaboration (GASOC) annual conference on Saturday 14th September 2019.
This year’s theme was Global Medical Technology.
Professor David Jayne, Clinical Director of GHRG-ST, Dr Jesudian Gnanaraj, Principal Investigator in India were both invited to present at the event. Other speakers included Tim Beacon from Medical Aid International and Professor Jenny Dankelman from Delft University of Technology.
Abstracts from the group were submitted to the conference, we had 2 presentations and 5 posters accepted. James Chandler won best oral presentation for, A digitally driven fabrication approach to allow affordable on-site manufacture of a novel upper gastroscope handle and Millie Marriott Webb won 3rd prize for her poster, A collaborative approach to re-design of a lift device for Gas Insufflation Less Laparoscopic Surgery (GILLS) in Low and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs). These abstracts will be published in Tropical Doctor.
GHRG-ST had a stand at the event showcasing our laparoscopic innovations for LMICs
Dr Jesudian Gnanaraj, GHRG-ST Principal Investigator in India travelled to Leeds last week to meet with the GHRG-ST UK team.
During his visit he attended GHRG meetings, met with the UK team and gave his invaluable feedback on the new device being developed by the team at the University and with our industry partner Pd-m.
On Saturday, Dr Gnanaraj presented at the GASOC #medtech conference, click here for more details of the conference.
GHRG-ST hosted the Global Anaesthesia , Surgery and Obstetric Journal Club on Thursday 18th July 2019,
The oral presentation titled Gas Insufflation Less Laparoscopic Surgery (GILLS) for minimally invasive surgery in low-resource settings: Methods for evaluating surgical field of view (FOV) and abdominal wall lift (AWL) force – A Cadaveric Study Model won two prizes at the conference the ASiT Global Surgery Prize and the prestigious ASiT/Swann Morton Medal.
The Global Surgery Award, delivered by the Association of Surgeons in Training (ASiT), recognises projects endeavouring to support surgical training in low-resource settings.
The award was established after a recent Lancet Commission on Global Surgery found that an estimated 5 billion people are unable to access safe surgery, and an additional 143 million surgical procedures required annually to address this unmet demand.
To learn more about the project, and its potential impact, Click here to watch the video.
This year’s GASOC Global Medtech conference will take place on 14th
September 2019 at 10:00-17:00 at The Carriageworks Theatre, The Electric Press, 3 Millennium Square, Leeds, LS2 3AD.
The conference aims to unite doctors and other health professionals in the fields of surgery, anaesthesia and obstetrics with a shared passion for global surgery/global health.
The Global Anaesthesia, Surgical and Obstetric Collaboration (GASOC) is the UK based trainee-led group made up of surgical, anaesthetic and obstetric junior doctors. We are passionate about learning and sharing medical knowledge and experience to improve surgical outcomes in low and middle-income countries. GASOC was founded following the launch of the Lancet Commission 2015 with the overriding aim of meeting the goals set out in the Commission’s 2030 Global Surgery report. We have support from and collaborate with Professor Chris Lavy, Lord Ian McColl and Sir Nigel Crisp.
The day will be split into two, with didactic sessions followed by a panel discussion and then a ‘hackathon’ where a global surgery ‘problem’ will be posed, and delegates will work in groups to come up with potential technological ‘solutions’. We hope to support the most promising of these in further development after the conference.
Confirmed speakers are Professor David Jayne (Director – NIHR Global Health Research Group – Surgical Technologies, University of Leeds), Professor Jenny Dankelman (Professor of Biomechanical Engineering, Delft University), Ms Adriana Berumen (Medical Device Lead, WHO, Geneva), Mr Tim Beacon (Director, Medical Aid International).
The conference is open to students and trainees from healthcare and engineering background from the UK and the developing counties who hold a keen interest in improving healthcare in the low and middle-income countries with the help of low cost, affordable, frugal technology.