8/26/23 UPDATE: The International Partner has decided to split this single grant into 2. All logistics remain the same. The financials are revised to reflect 10 mos. initial expenses. Remainder will be in a subsequent grant. This VTT project is for the support of visiting international trainers and Rwandan trainees in Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery. We plan to train the first 3 orthopedic surgeons in the sub-specialty of pediatric orthopedics in Rwanda, a country of 14 million. Upon completion of training, the intent is to have the 3 graduates establish and run their own permanent national/ international training center.
BACKGROUND: In September, 2016 Children's Orthopedic Education for Developing Nations (COEDN), a US-based non- profit NGO, commenced full-time training of 3 orthopedic surgeons at the Muhimbili Orthopedic Institute (MOI) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, the premier referral and teaching hospital in this country of 60 million people. By November, 2018 an international team of doctors led by COEDN founder, director and Rotarian Dr. Mark Barry completed training of a two year accredited pediatric orthopedics fellowship program for the 3 trainees, now the first children's Orthopedic specialists in the country. This model provided for 11 trainers, who are highly experienced senior pediatric orthopedic surgeon volunteer educators from the US, Canada, and Israel to travel sequentially to MOI to train our trainees for 4-6 weeks at a time. This unique intensive training model resulted in the three fellowship trainees passing rigorous written and oral exams to obtain their certification as "Fellow of the College of Surgeons of East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA)" (FCS paed-ortho (ECSA)) in December, 2019. By design, the final endpoint goal has always been for MOI to establish the first accredited pediatric orthopedic fellowship training center in the 14 nation ESCA region.
This training included a successful (2nd year) five month Rotary sponsored VTT global grant: GG1864829. The host club was the Rotary Club of Oyster Bay in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. This grant supported the expenses of sending 5 trainers from the US in the second half of 2019. This grant is complete and the outcome of training has been a great success. Our 3 graduates are now training 4 pediatric orthopedic fellows of their own! ...and many more anticipated in years to come. These newly (yearly) minted specialist surgeons will populate hospitals throughout Tanzania and beyond.
A near identical fellowship training program supported by VTT grant: GG1988382 was commenced in December of 2019 at CoRSU (Comprehensive Rehabilitation Services of Uganda) Hospital in Entebbe, Uganda.
CoRSU is a not-for-profit charity run hospital. This program provided a unique opportunity for the Rotary Clubs and Districts involved to work with a proven, established VTT template to execute a project that will increase capacity at a very high level at Uganda's leading pediatric orthopedic and plastic-reconstructive surgery center. Three orthopedic surgeons on staff are currently being trained in a similar fashion by our VTT trainers in a COSECSA accredited program. It is again the goal of this program to establish a COSECSA accredited "International Center of Training Excellence" in pediatric orthopedic surgery after the fellows graduate in December 2023.
THIS NEW VTT GRANT APPLICATION IS FOR RWANDA, a country of 14 million with no pediatric orthopedic surgeons. A nationwide study in 2009 has shown that there are an estimated 50,000 children in need of orthopedic surgery. Dr. Barry has travelled there 3 times in the last 4 years to meet with local academic leaders who strongly desire the program to train their first 3 pediatric orthopedic surgeons for Rwanda, and establish a permanent international training center. The 2 year COSECSA accredited fellowship training program will commence in January 2024. Planning is on schedule.
OBJECTIVE 1: Provide a full-time, curriculum of didactic education, hands-on surgical skills training and leadership skills training for 3 fellows in complex pediatric orthopedic conditions through on-going trainer visits over a full time 12 month period, followed by 4 returning visits (every 3 mos.) over the 2nd year of the formal COSECSA accredited 2 year training program.
OBJECTIVE 2: Graduate the local fellows and have them start a permanent fellowship training center of their own.
OBJECTIVE 3: Lay the groundwork for a future Pediatric SPINE Center, a first for East Africa.
FINANCES: Funds raised are to cover 1. trainers expenses: airfare, accommodations, meal allowance, visa, license, travel insurance and incidentals, and 2. Academic fees for the trainees. SEE DOCUMENTS for detailed breakdown.
TOTAL for first 10 months of this 2 year project (this grant): $72,913.