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UNC Global Anesthesia continues to support anesthesia care at Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe, Malawi. Through the financial support of gracious donors and the in-person commitment of a portion of our faculty, the organization provides supplies and education to the members of the hospital’s Anesthesia Clinical Officer training program. The class of 2023 successfully completed their training earlier this year and a new class of students have recently started their didactic instruction and will soon be transitioning to clinical roles.

A few times each year, the UNC Department of Anesthesiology sends faculty and residents to Lilongwe to work with the training officers. Each day during the trip they provide assistance in the operating room in the morning that may include pediatric or adult cases encompassing general surgery, orthopedics, neurosurgery, urology, and other specialties. In the afternoons, they deliver lectures to the training officers as well as conduct mock cases using an automated simulator and organize ultrasound technique workshops. The next trip is scheduled for February 2024 and will include faculty members Drs. Elisa Lund, Michael Hart, CA-3s Drs. Jennifer Tripi and Lauren Blake, and UNC Anesthesiology residency alum Dr. Robin Leopold.

The height of the COVID pandemic challenged our the program’s activities in Lilongwe, and our involvement with training officers waned. Nonetheless, UNC Global Anesthesia hopes to strengthen our role in the coming years. Our 2024 goals include: 1) To create a more comprehensive curriculum for the training officers; 2) To develop an organized POCUS training

plan; 3) To identify areas in which we can engage the hospital in research; and 4) To lay the groundwork and infrastructure for future telemedicine opportunities. As more faculty and residents get involved, the amount of time and energy we can direct to these goals will grow and will make these targets more attainable.

Beginning in 2023, the program was fortunately in a position to provide funding to cover the training and living costs for one of the training officers. This unique opportunity has been made possible by donations from members of the department faculty and demonstrates the commitment that UNC Anesthesiology has to the success of the Malawi training program. We hope this is an endeavor that will continue, and grow, for years to come.

If you would like to support this program, please consider donating to the Malawi Fund.