About Us

The Office of Global Surgery (OGS) strives to strengthen and empower health care systems in low-resource settings to deliver high-quality health care to marginalized populations around the world. We aim to achieve this goal by leveraging institutional partnerships to build systems-level improvements to our target communities. Our beneficiaries include patients, health care providers, hospitals, and academic institutions in both High-Income Countries (HICs) and Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs).


Activity Clusters

We achieve this through four main activity clusters.


Clinical Care and Delivery:

At the base is the facilitation of providing direct clinical service to under-resource areas, such as facilitating University of Alberta surgeons to perform surgical teaching to health centres in LMICs.


The OGS also engages in educational initiatives aimed at improving competencies of health care providers and trainees in LMICs. These initiatives range from short-term competency courses to developing and reforming medical education curriculum to include key global surgery competencies. An example of this is the Trauma Team Training program established in Kenya to teach basic trauma management and life support skills to community health providers.


The OGS undertakes research initiatives in basic sciences and health care delivery. Our research projects range from trauma registry data collection to finding novel solutions to improve surgical outcomes for patients in resource-scarce environments. Examples include our ongoing trauma registry research projects with Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital in Western Uganda.

System Development:

System development lies at the top of our activity tiers. We use technical and social innovation  and our international partnerships to introduce improvements to how health systems function at a high-level. System development bridges the disciplines of research, innovation, entrepreneurship, and knowledge translation to impart social change.


Organizational Hierarchy:

The OGS is led by its Steering Committee, which is an interdisciplinary advisory body comprised of mid-senior level faculty members from the Department of Surgery and other Faculties and Departments within the University. The Steering Committee meets quarterly to provide input on the governance and strategic development of the Office.

Working Groups oversee most operational aspects of the OGS and its projects and communicates with the Steering Committee to ensure the OGS stays on track with its strategic priorities. Below are brief descriptions of Working Groups (WG) currently in operation.


Ethical Framework Working Group:
This Working Group oversees research and creation of a framework addressing the ethical and pragmatic considerations of undertaking collaborative partnerships in academic global surgery. This working group will perform research, convene collaborative dialogues, consolidate literature and publish guidelines on the ethical conduct of global surgery. The working group will also review and monitor adherence of OGS projects to its ethical and moral mandates.

Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation (RM&E) Working Group:
The RM&E Working Group defines and implements the academic direction and projects that the OGS will undertake. Additionally, the this group implements procedures by which the OGS selects projects, methodology, and ethical standards involved with OGS research. In addition to the above, this Working Group will build, maintain, and apply monitoring and evaluation tools to ensure ethical and proper conduct of OGS projects, operations, and administration.

Education and Curriculum Working Group: The Education and Curriculum Working Group is responsible for defining and operationalizing the academic priorities of the OGS. This includes creating and implementing global surgery specific lectures, seminars, conferences, and courses at the University of Alberta and its partner institutions. Any consideration of curriculum development, knowledge translation, and logistics of student involvement will involve this Working Group.

Administration and Finance Working Group: The Administration and Finance Working Group manages office finances and the day-to-day administration and operations of the OGS. This group will work closely with the core administrative team at the University of Alberta Department of Surgery to ensure OGS’s policy adherence in governance, administration, and operation.

Outreach and Promotion Working Group: The Outreach and Promotion Working Group is responsible for publishing and maintaining the presence and brand of the OGS on traditional and social media outlets. This Working Group works with members from the Department of Surgery’s Communication team and adhere to processes and policies that govern the release of information at the University of Alberta.

Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Social Change Working Group: This Working Group oversees initiatives that bridge the fields of commercialization, entrepreneurial pursuits, and innovation in global surgery. This group will pursue projects and initiatives that help translate innovations in global surgery research into reproducible and scalable solutions to address global surgery and public health challenges in the community and beyond.