The Surgical Foundation is the charitable arm of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland (ASGBI); a highly regarded and exceptionally well-networked organisation, with over 1,100 members, which will be celebrating its centenary in 2020.
Established in 1998, The Surgical Foundation’s mission is to advance surgical standards and improve outcomes for patients in Great Britain, Ireland and low and middle income countries (LMIC). We achieve this by providing education and training to surgeons practicing in countries where there is limited access to learning opportunities. In practice, this is the delivery of specific surgical training courses (anastomosis workshops; managing surgical emergencies; basic surgical skills; nurse training) in low and middle income countries (LMICs), and international bursaries for five surgical trainees from LMICs each year to attend the ASGBI International Surgical Congress where they learn from and connect with the international surgical community and spend time visiting a UK hospital.
From 2012-17 we trained 141 trainers, 260 surgical trainees and 382 theatre nurses, across 42 courses in sub-Saharan Africa. We have also awarded 70 bursaries since 2008. One of our landmark achievements is that the Basic Surgical Skills Course we delivered in East Africa has become a statutory requirement for all surgeons in the East, Central and Southern Africa region, and is delivered by the respective colleges.
Each year we award the prestigious Moynihan Travelling Fellowship to an outstanding young surgeon from Great Britain or Ireland, enabling them to enhance their surgical skills and to use them to benefit patients and the surgical community at large. We also recognise the best performance at each sitting of the Intercollegiate Surgical Examination with a prestigious ASGBI medal. We have previously funded Overseas Surgical Bursaries for surgeons wishing to work on a short-term basis in a poorly resourced country, enabling them to provide training and support for overseas medical schools in their post-graduate training. We aim to reinstate these bursaries in the future.
All work is planned and delivered by the Foundation’s highly engaged and well networked Board of Trustees and other volunteers from the surgical community. The Foundation Manager also manages the ASGBI. This inextricable link ensures the Foundation’s longevity.