Surgery…The Neglected Child of Global Public Health
Public health now has a prominent role in the health initiatives of developing countries across the world. However, despite this push, development of an adequate surgical workforce has not occurred. The surgical disease burden continues to grow, now reaching unfathomable numbers. The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery reports, “Over half the global population cannot access the treatment they need should they hemorrhage after childbirth, suffer a burn, or develop cancer.” It is exactly a need like this that has given an opportunity for Christians to reach in to a needy world, giving the love of Christ’s hands and feet. In 1997, God gave an inspiration to create a surgical training program in Sub-Saharan Africa to facilitate training and discipleship for some of Africa’s next generation of surgeons. PAACS (The Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons) was created to meet not only the physical needs, but be a strategic response to the spiritual needs. PAACS now has over 60 graduates and over 70 residents currently in training. In this session, Dr. Keir Thelander reviews the growing surgical disease burden, the work of PAACS, and how you can make a difference.
Linking Resident Education and Discipleship Across Country Borders:
The Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons (PAACS)
In 2 Timothy 2:2 Paul writes, “And the things you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” That verse has been the major component of the marching orders for the Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons since 1997. God has now expanded PAACS’ influence to 9 training sites in 8 different countries across Africa. One hundred percent of PAACS’ graduates continue to work and serve and share the love of Christ in Africa. In spite of the challenges of overseeing a cross-cultural, across country borders program, God continues to open doors for growth and the expansion of His glory through PAACS.