2015 – Laparoscopic Surgery

Since 2003 Northumbria has been working with KCMC to develop laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery. This surgery is undertaken through small incisions, which allows a camera to show the inside of the body so that the surgeon can operate using special tools. As the incisions are small this means that the wounds heal more quickly and the patient can return home after a short hospital stay.

Training started in 2004 when consultant surgeon Liam Horgan and theatre trainer Sister Lillian Broatch began to train surgeons and nurses at KCMC. That year Tanzania’s first laparoscopic procedure was performed.

After another two years of intensive training the team developed a special audio-visual link between KCMC theatres and Hexham General Hospital in UK. This enabled surgeons in the UK to guide surgeons at KCMC while they were operating in Tanzania. At that time laparoscopic operations were being undertaken every week.

In 2008 KCMC began to deliver an annual national laparoscopic course and this has continued each year.  Surgeons and nurses travel to KCMC from across Tanzania to attend the course.

In 2016 KCMC surgeons performed the first day case laparoscopic surgery. The patient was able to be discharged home at the end of the operation. More than 1000 laparoscopic procedures have now been successfully completed.

Liam Horgan “One of my key achievements as a surgeon has been to reach out to my colleagues in Tanzania and help train them to deliver laparoscopic surgery. This has not been an easy task but it has been immensely rewarding and along the way I have learnt a great deal.”