I will be in Phnom Penh, Cambodia for almost three weeks working with general surgeons and surgery residents. I will be working in the surgery clinic and helping with laparoscopic abdominal cases. Typically, the surgeons are doing open cases at this hospital.
The surgeons in Phnom Penh and the residents of the city will benefit. This particular population is chosen because our surgery preceptor has started a clinic in the area and has connected our surgery residency and other surgeons to assist with care for this population.
This is an ongoing effort with surgical residents from my institution (UC Irvine) as well as general surgeons to continue working with this population to improve access to care, as well as to provide laparoscopic instruments and training to local surgeons in Phnom Penh.
Spending 3 weeks at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, I had the opportunity to work with a number of Cambodian surgeons in a hospital with limited resources. Due to cost, exploratory laparotomies are commonly performed in place of CT scans. This often leads to highly invasive surgeries that could otherwise be avoided with better access to resources. While there, I had the opportunity to help train attending surgeons and residents surgeons how to perform basic laparoscopic surgeries to provide minimally invasive surgical options for surgeons operating at this hospital. Dr. Bot was one particular surgeon I worked with on a daily basis. Working with him over the course of my stay, I was able to learn how he functioned with limited resources, and also help guide him through laparoscopic surgeries. He is now spreading this knowledge to surgical residents at the hospital as they focus on performing laparoscopic cholecystectomies.