West African College of Surgeons partners EFSTH to train young Gambian doctors


By Oumie Mendy

Gambian medical doctors are undergoing a three-day capacity building  on basic surgery procedures at the EFSTH conference room in Banjul.

The training is organised by the country’s main referral Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital (EFSTH) in collaboration with the West African College of Surgeons (WACS).  It aims to better equip the young surgeons with suficent skills to undertake middle level surgical operations within the sub-region  as well as prepare them for the upcoming West African college of surgeons membership examination. 


The Secretary General at WACS Pro. Philip M. Mshelbwala, who is also the course supervisor, emphasised that the College attached huge importance to the training, saying as surgeons their principal mandate is to treat human beings and ensure the safety of patients.

He expressed optimism that the training will better improve the participants capacities to effectively handle patients.

Professor Philip commended the government for its good will and commitment by allowing them to transfer skills that will be relevant for every patient.   

The past president of WACS Professor KDT Yawer, said the training is an important aspect of WACS and a basic criteria for young doctors to be able to meet the requirement for the exams.

“This is a course offered around the globe and standards have to be maintained.  The counsel of WACS approved the Gambia as a center which this course can be held,and  for young gambian doctors to be trained in many other specialities and not only in surgery. Progress has already been made in conducting the training in the Gambia considering that a group of doctors were already trained and two passed the examination. The presence of the secretary general here is to salvage other issues that are needed to upgrade the college’s participation in the country and to have a very firm center for conducting examinations.”

Dr Salifu Gaye, a participant said the training came at the right time as they prepare for the membership exams.

He expressed gratitude to the College and the Gambian health authorties for the oppourtunity.

“The country needs specialist and  having WACS train our own doctors is a great achievement for sustainable development. This will help perfect our skill as surgeons, it is difficult as a surgeon to perform surgery on patients without the required skills” he said.

Dr. Gaye, urges his fellow surgeon doctors to continue the dedication and remain steadfast.