Academic partnerships in global surgery: An overview American surgical association working group on academic global surgery

Haile Debas, Olusegun I. Alatise, Charles M. Balch, Murray Brennan, James Cusack, Peter Donkor, Bernard M. Jaffe, George V. Mazariegos, Charles Mock, David Mutiibwa, Patricia Numann, John Kennedy Muma Nyagatuba, James A. O'Neill, John L. Tarpley, Samuel Tesfaye, Girma Tefera, Todd M. Tuttle

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Most surgeons from high-income countries who work in global surgery will do so through partnerships between their institutions and institutions in low- A nd middle-income countries (LMICs). In this article, the American Surgical Association Working Group for Global Surgery lays out recommendations for criteria that contribute to equitable, sustainable, and effective partnerships. These include ethically engaging with the LMIC partner institution by putting its interests first and by proactively seeking to be aware of cultural issues. Formally structuring the partnership with a memorandum of understanding and clearly designating leaders at both institutions are important criteria for assuring long-term sustainability. Needs assessments can be done using existing methods, such as those established for development of national surgical, obstetric, and anesthesia plans. Such assessments help to identify opportunities for partnerships to be most effective in addressing the biggest surgical needs in the LMIC. Examples of successful high-income countries-LMIC partnerships are provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)460-469
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of surgery
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2020



  • global health
  • global surgery
  • low- A nd middle-income country
  • partnership

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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