Professor Ciaran O’Boyle, Director of the Institute of Leadership and Mr. Dermot O’Flynn, Director of Corporate Training at the Institute delivered a series of five “Train the Trainer” courses as part of the RCSI’s involvement in the COSECSA Project.


The training programme was organised by Mr. Roger Duggan, RCSI-COSECSA Programme Director. The participants were leading surgeons in Rwanda, Zimbabwe and Zambia, who completed the RCSI Institute of Leadership's On-line Course and attended a One-day Training Programme. Courses were held in Kigali (Rwanda), Harare and Bulawayo (Zimbabwe) and Lusaka (Zambia).



Pictured:  Mr Dermot O’Flynn and Professor Ciaran O’Boyle with course participants in Harare, Zimbabwe


The RCSI-COSECSA project is funded by Irish Aid to improve the standards of surgical care, training, education and examinations in the region. The COSECSA region encompasses nine countries along the east, central and southern regions of Africa: Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The training method at COSECSA is based on the principle of a “college without walls” and the Institute of Leadership’s philosophy of blended learning fits readily into this model.

The training challenge facing COSECSA can be appreciated when one considers that there are only 1,100 qualified surgeons in the COSECSA region for a population of 250 million people. While England has 35 surgeons per 100,000 population, Kenya has 2.5 per 100,000, Zambia 2 per 100,000, Uganda has 1.5 per 100,000, while Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania and Malawi have only 1 surgeon per 100,000.



Pictured: Professor Ciaran O’Boyle with Mr Dermot O’Flynn with course participants in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe




Pictured: Mr Dermot O’Flynn and Professor Ciaran O’Boyle with course participants on the second course in Lusaka, Zambia


The COSECSA model is an in-service apprenticeship training model, and most learning is through hands-on clinical practice.  Trainees are based in the training location.  Some locations are university training hospitals, where most trainees would also sit the university MMed Surgery exams others are very remote regional hospitals where trainees only sit COSECSA exams.  The academic component is delivered through a combination of e-learning and short courses.



Pictured: Professor Ciaran O'Boyle and Mr. Dermot O'Flynn with course participants in Lusaka, Zambia


Further information on the COSECSA Project can be found at: