Global Neurosurgery 2019: A Practical Symposium

By Anisa Nazir

The Global Neurosurgery symposium was held on January 18th and 19th at the Weill Cornell Medical School in New York City, USA, attended by representatives from 5 continents. Dr. Walt Johnson from WHO Emergency and Essential Surgery led the keynote, speaking about the role of neurosurgery in global surgery, the progress it has made over the years and the dire need for surgical commitments.

Throughout the meeting, there were captivating discussions about different challenges encountered, progress made, and most importantly, what still needs to address. The presenters focused on advocacy, resolution development, service delivery and accessible health systems. Various examples of current programs included the development of neurosurgical services available in Tanzania, evaluations with a focus on formal training programs in Hanoi, Vietnam, as well as the use of new diagnostic technology to diagnose life-threatening neurosurgical conditions. Specifically, studies commented on the global burden of neurosurgical conditions including stroke, traumatic brain injury, and pediatric conditions such as hydrocephalus. On a larger scale, conversation leaned towards the importance of national and regional strategic planning and its implementation in lower and middle-income countries.

The InciSioN delegation was in attendance with 14 students and represented the student and trainee perspective on global neurosurgery. Sara Venturini (InciSioN-UK) presented her and her team’s research on the effects of legislation on helmet use in Cambodia, emphasizing the importance of local buy-in as well as policy-making for impactful change in communities.

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