09 January 2012
The poorest third of the world’s population undergo only 3.5% of the world’s major surgical procedures, and the richest third undergo 73.6% 
Malawi, a country of 14 million people, has the same number of surgeons for the whole country that one would expect in a large UK district general hospital 
The Royal College of Surgeons Global Surgical Frontiers conference, taking place in the College on the 13 January, will link surgeons at all stages in their careers with organisations that work in surgery in both developing and developed countries. The conference will provide UK surgeons considering an overseas placement with relevant information and advice while offering a platform to discuss the global surgical issues of the day.
Speakers on the day include:
Lord Ian McColl, former professor of surgery at Guys hospital and chairman of Mercy Ships – a charity run by volunteer doctors, nurses, water engineers and agriculturalists who visit some of the world’s poorest countries to offer life-changing services free of charge.
Professor Gordon Williams OBE, who is currently director of fistula hospitals in Ethiopia and works regularly in Afghanistan and South Sudan.
Stephen O’Brien MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for International Development, who has an interest in tropical health and founded the all party group on Malaria and neglected tropical diseases.
More information and a copy of the programme may be found here
Notes to editor:
 Weiser TG, Regenbogen SE, Thompson KD et al (2008) An estimation of the global volume of surgery: a modelling strategy based on available data. Lancet 372:139–144
 World J Surg (2011) 35:262–271 Jean Bosco Ndihokubwayo Eldryd Parry. State of Surgery in Tropical Africa: A Review