Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Achievements and impact

In the seven years prior to the start of the Collaboration Programme COSECSA had graduated a total of 17 surgeons. This has now grown exponentially and the 300th Fellow is expected to graduate in December 2018.

COSECSA is now the largest single contributor to the surgical workforce in the region with 600 trainees enrolled across 12 member countries.

There has long been a perception that there is a 'brain drain' of skilled health workers from lower income countries emigrating to higher-income countries. However, research shows that 85% of surgeons who have undergone their specialist training in the East, Central and Southern Africa region are retained in their country of training. In total, 93% of African-trained surgeons remain in Africa. 'Brain drain' of this cadre of healthcare worker is a myth.

COSECSA-trained surgeons perform on average between 300-400 major surgeries a year. They also in turn become trainers for the next generation of surgeons, thus exponentially increasing their impact on surgery in the region.