Global Health Initiatives

Each year our faculty and trainees travel internationally to participate in global health initiatives. We have developed relationships with 5 primary locations—Afghanistan, Guyana, India, Rwanda and Uganda. Doctors also choose to use personal time to participate in service trips independently in other locations.

Afghanistan

The University of Minnesota and Kabul University of Medical Sciences (KUMS) partnered to initiate this project with the goal to improve clinical, educational, professional and leadership skills for health sciences faculty in Kabul, Afghanistan, in order to help them meet projected workforce needs. Dr. Olejniczak is the technical lead for Anesthesiology.

The work plan includes a series of exchanges in third-country locations with activities designed to help KUMS faculty bring educational materials and skills home to implement with feedback and refinement support from afar.

The partnership is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and is part of a larger initiative implemented by FHI360.

If you’re interested in participating, contact Dr. Olejniczak at meganjoy@umn.edu.

Guyana

The ASA Global Humanitarian Outreach Committee (GHO) Guyana Overseas Teaching Program, was established in 2016 in collaboration with the Canadian Society of Anesthesia for ASA members to help educate and train Guyanese Anesthesiology Residents in a newly developed residency training program at the Georgetown Public Hospital.

ASA member volunteers provide classroom and clinical teaching as well as support faculty development.  In the first year, the GHO sent 9 volunteers for a total of 4.5 months of volunteer teaching support, with enthusiastic response from the local anesthesia department.

Anesthesia delivery and training conditions are precarious in Guyana. In most of the country, providers have technician or nursing-level training. There are eight trained anesthesiology specialists working in the capital—an insufficient number to provide quality education to a new generation of anesthesiologists. The partnership supports educational efforts with volunteer anesthesiologists from the US and Canada.

India

Our department offers an anesthesia elective rotation to medical students, residents and fellows in India. There are two primary sites in the major city of Bengaluru—St. John’s Medical College, an excellent state-of-the-art campus that includes housing for international students and Narayana Health City which offers a wide variety of opportunities for specialized work, including the world’s largest cardiovascular facility. The campus is also home to a pediatric hospital and hospitals focusing on cancer and ocular treatment.

Learn more.

Rwanda

Operating since 2006 to strengthen anesthesia education for residents and technicians, the ASA-CASIEF program accepts four ASA faculty members per year as volunteer teachers to increase capacity for safe and effective anesthesia care across Rwanda. Trainees who have graduated from this program are now faculty in Rwanda promoting anesthesia safety, education, and patient advocacy.

Learn more about the ASA-CASIEF program .

Uganda

Our medical collaboration with Ruth Gaylord Hospital Maganjo in Kampala, Uganda started in 2017. Doctors spend one week providing free surgeries to low-income patients. The future plan includes a collaboration that will serve more patients, including pediatric, and will allow residents from the Anesthesiology and Surgery Department to participate.