The Bethune Conference, hosted this year in Edmonton by the Department of Surgery’s Office of Global Surgery, was a blazing success. Over 130 surgeons, physicians, allied health professionals, and trainees came from Asia, Africa, Europe, South and North America to attend this year's conference to discuss the ethics of global surgery. They also show cased their successes and the challenges of providing accessible, high-quality surgical care to marginalized patients in low-resource settings. The Bethune Conference is held annually across cities in Canada, and frequent attendees of this conference (many of whom have hosted this in the past) recounted the Edmonton conference as one of the best they'd been to.
Leading up to the conference, the Office of Global Surgery led a series of international collaborative webinars and a subsequent Pre-Conference Workshop on Thursday, June 6, 2019 to create an ethical framework for global surgery. The workshop was especially well-attended and culminated voices of clinicians from around the world to produce a draft structure of an ethical framework, which became a centre piece of this year's Bethune Round Table.
Moreover, the seminar-style discussions among the 70 attendees at Thursday's workshop created a cohesive community of conference delegates. The enthusiasm and positive momentum carried throughout the conference and built an open and encouraging atmosphere for Canadian Offices of Global Surgery and our partner institutions in Low- and Middle-Income Countries to showcase their respective projects and developmental priorities, and facilitated candid dialogues on the future collaborations and directions of global surgery.