As increased travel, migration and trans-national cooperation shrinks the world into one global community, the Ohio State Department of Surgery aims to foster the training and development of students, residents and faculty who are prepared to meet the challenges and opportunities of the modern era. During PGY4, our residents have a unique opportunity to participate in one-month international elective rotations in either a high-income country (HIC) or a low- and middle-income country (LMIC) setting.

Global Surgery

Exposing residents to different health systems

Rotations in a HIC setting, where disease conditions are similar to those in the U.S., expose residents to complex surgical care in a different health system. In contrast, exposure to surgery in the under-resourced environment of LMIC hospitals has the primary goal to help provide care to host communities. In addition, there are possible benefits for our residents as they gain exposure to diseases and treatment approaches not typically seen in the U.S., and learn how to carefully utilize scarce resources to provide effective surgical care. In both settings, residents develop international professional relationships that will be useful in the future.

Our general surgery elective rotations are purposefully located in teaching institutions so our residents are able to participate in peer teaching, as well as design and implement scholarly projects in collaboration with residents and faculty in our partner departments of surgery. The Ohio State global surgery electives are designed as ACGME-accredited rotations.

High-Income Country (HIC) Rotation

ACGME-accredited rotations to Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia, began in 2017. Westmead Hospital is a 975-bed major tertiary hospital that is affiliated with the Sydney Medical School at the University of Sydney.

Low- and Middle-Income Country (LMIC) Rotation

We have a rotation at Black Lion Hospital, Addis Ababa, a teaching hospital of Addis Ababa University (AAU) in Ethiopia. It is the largest tertiary care referral hospital in Ethiopia, with 600 total beds, 16 ICU beds and 19 operating rooms. Across all surgical services, annual surgery case volume is approximately 12,000. The Department of Surgery has an established relationship with AAU through the Ohio State Global One Health Initiative (GOHi). GOHi has a regional office in Addis Ababa, which helps coordinate travel and logistics.

We also have a planned rotation in Cape Town, South Africa, through the University of Cape Town. This rotation allows the resident to select in advance from multiple hospitals in Cape Town, depending on the resident’s professional interests.

Resident and nurse

Resident Research Projects

Each resident selected for an international rotation will be required to develop a field research project in advance so that data collection can begin upon arrival at the host site. Residents will work with faculty from Ohio State and host faculty to identify appropriate research projects.

Global Health Interest Group

This is an an institutionwide project that connects residents interested in global health across different specialties. Quarterly journal clubs are held to discuss cross-cutting subjects.

Our Mission and Vision

Our mission is to help develop our students, residents and faculty to become global citizens. We hope to become a global leader in promoting safe surgical care in underserved communities at home and abroad, through partnerships in education, training, research and innovation.

Our vision is to improve access to quality surgical care worldwide.

Meet our global surgery program director

Dr. Nwomeh

Benedict Nwomeh, MD

As director of the Global Surgery Program at Ohio State, Dr. Nwomeh is encouraging residents and faculty to become global citizens and contribute to making safe surgical care available to patients around the world.

“This program is important because it teaches physicians about global health issues and better prepares them to treat underserved populations in America and around the world,” he explains. “It is a program aimed at making sure everyone, no matter where they live, has access to safe and high-quality surgical care.”

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