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  • My name is Dr Allan Ngulube , I am a Consultant General Surgeon based at Mpilo Central Hospital a 1000 bed government referral hospital in Bulawayo the second largest city of Zimbabwe. I am married to Sehliselwe and together we have two daughters Allison (9) and Sinovuyo (5). I first heard of Severance Hospital in 2017 from a Zimbabwean colleague of mine, an ENT Surgeon, who was on his way to Severance for a fellowship, he in turn introduced me to a Korean Missionary couple Dr Jin (Paediatrician) and Prof Kang (Pharmacologist) who are both Severance Alumni and currently based in Harare teaching at the University of Zimbabwe. A few months later I also applied for a fellowship at Severance with interest in Gastrointestinal Surgery and I was accepted for the fellowship from April to June 2018. From the time I came from the fellowship to date, I have been in touch with the Severance hospital team particularly the Medical Mission Centre which frequently shares online the experiences of other fellows who are constantly visiting Severance and there are occasional physical visits to my country by the Severance Medical Mission Centre team who come to visit Avison fellows as well as medical students under various mentorship programs where we meet, discuss and fellowship together, these shared experiences and visits are a source of strength and hope when we face difficult times in our own centres. Over the course of the years, I have also recommended a few colleagues who were interested in different fellowship programs at Severance and some have actually participated in fellowship programs. I have had the priviledge of successfully applying and being awarded the Avison Global Health Project Fund for 2022/23 that we have used at my local hospital to assist in repairing endoscopy machinery and also to purchase oesophageal stents plus endoscopy accessories for use mainly in assisting disadvantaged oesophageal cancer patients. In June 2023 we had the honour of having a visiting team from Severance Hospital Medical Mission Centre (Prof Pak Chin, Prof Choi , Prof Kang and Dr Jin) coming to Mpilo Hospital, this is the first time the team has visited our city, their visit left a lasting impression to our hospital administrators and from the interactions a few colleagues from my institution have established contact for application for future fellowships. In addition to the routine burden of general surgical work , I currently teach Medical and Nursing students plus Specialist Surgeons in training from the local medical and nursing schools. I am also running, on behalf of the Mpilo Department of Surgery, an endoscopy unit whose special target is to assist in palliative care for oesophageal cancer patients but we are also extending our service to other non cancer admitted patients with urgent issues requiring endoscopy. As it stands, our hospital is the only Government referral hospital that is offering that service of palliative oesophageal stenting in the southern half of the country courtesy of the Avison Grant fund. Previously our hospital had last offered any form of flexible endoscopy services around 1999 therefore since then, most patients requiring the services had to seek services in the private sector which tended to be very expensive and unreachable to many. Since resuming endoscopies, our patients now get treatment earlier unlike previously where inconclusive diagnoses delayed treatment by days to weeks while awaiting investigations. The work we have started doing, particularly in endoscopic work is largely satisfying not only because of the visible improved quality of life in the patients we attend to, but also because skills are being transferred to theatre nurses, junior doctors and trainee surgeons. Personally my faith has been greatly strengthened and I am always looking forward to a brighter future. Our most significant need is of quality modern diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopy equipment specifically we lack both flexible and rigid minimally invasive surgery equipment, currently we have a single improvised Olympus CLV260 endoscopy tower (repaired with the Avison Grant fund), the tower is equipped with a single (1) flexible colonoscope and a single (1) gastroscope - this grossly limits the number of patients that can be served at any time due to infection control issues, I think addition of a few more gastroscopes for that tower or a more modern system with more than one gastroscope would go a long way in improving access to diagnostic and therapeutic services, additionally our hospital does not have a single laparoscopy tower and the existing endoscopy tower does not have components that allow it to be retrofitted to allow for rigid endoscopy/laparoscopy to be performed on it therefore most surgical procedures done at our centre are invasive and this impacts on patient’s outcomes. Our national economy has been and still is struggling and this presents a number of challenges especially in purchasing and sometimes maintaining equipment as availability of funds is uncertain, the other challenge on a clinical level is that of keeping up to date with changing trends in patient care as our institution only offers procedures that have since been discarded in other parts of the world as surgical innovations improve. On being granted the award – I feel deeply humbled and am grateful for the recognition of our small efforts. I however believe that though the award is being given to me as an individual it truly belongs to the entire Department of Surgery at my hospital and is coming as recognition to all the support staff who serve the population untiringly under difficult conditions and with very little resources. God has been gracious and I have so much faith that the future holds greater things for us.

    Dec 14, 2023

  • 1) Please introduce yourself. I’m Daniel Wilfredo Banegas Carrasco, 28 years old, I was born in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. My family consists of my father, Wilfredo, my mother, Lilibeth and I have two siblings, my older sister, Isi, and my younger brother, Gabriel. Also, my future wife, Scarlet. 2) Where is your working place back in your country and what is your specialty? I work as a Dental Surgeon at Dentis Clinica Integral and Clinica Dental Trinidad. 3) How did you get to know Severance? Why did you choose Severance as your training hospital? I was introduced to Severance Hospital by my mentor and friend, Korean American Missionary, Dr. Chan Hyeok Jeon, who’s been serving in Honduras for the last 13 years. Dr. Jeon as a Yonsei University graduate himself invited me to participate in the Avison International Fellowship program and shared with me the history of how this hospital was founded, without a doubt, I was more than willing to apply. 4) How long is your training period in Korea? My training period in Korea is for 1 year. 5) Which area did you focus on during your fellowship at Severance? I’m training in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, I had the opportunity to rotate between the two areas offered by the department which are Oral Cancer & Reconstruction, and Dentofacial Deformity. 6) What is the most impressive feature of Severance Hospital? I’m genuinely impressed by the amazing human resources Severance Hospital has because even though it is one of the most technological and advanced hospitals in the world, all the people who work at Severance are giving all the dedication humanly possible to move along with the workflow and demand, as well as their academical and professional capacity. I believe without their dedication and mindset; it would be impossible to be one of the best hospitals in the world. 7) What are the specific contents of your fellowship program at Severance? My training program covers: 1. Diagnosis and treatment of Dentofacial Deformity such as orthognathic surgery and cleft lip and palate surgery. 2. Basic implant surgery, bone grafting techniques, and sinus lift surgery. 3. Treatment in oral and maxillofacial surgery such as facial trauma, salivary gland disease, and temporomandibular joint disease. 4. Oral Cancer and Reconstructive Surgery 8) If you were to get the chance to come back, which field of clinical study would you like to focus on? If I have the opportunity to come back, I will be again in oral and maxillofacial surgery. 9) Who are you most thankful for at Severance(who helped you the most) & why? I’m very grateful to many people, but I’m deeply grateful to Professor Dong-Wook Kim for his time and dedication during my time in Severance. I have to thank all my professors who opened the doors to me, Chairman Prof. Woong Nam, Prof. Hyung Jun Kim, Prof. Jin Hoo Park, Prof. Jun-Young Kim, Dental Hospital Director Prof. Young-Soo Jung, Emeritus Prof. Hyung-Sik Park and College of Dentistry Dean Prof. Kee Joon Lee. Also, I'm very grateful with all my heart to the fellows, residents, interns, dental hygienists, nurses, and hospital staff who were always polite, kind, and willing to help me. Last but not least I’m thankful to the Medical Mission Center team, and director, Dr. Chin Yong Pak. 10) What was your first impression of Korea? When I got off the plane all I could say was “WOW!”. I was so impressed by the technology, the transportation system, how organized, safe, and clean everything is, and the food is very delicious. 11) What is the best memory so far during your stay here? During my time in Korea, I’ve had so many memories, I’ve built relationships, I’ve made so many friends, and learned so much. I will carry all these memories once I return to my country. But the most beautiful memories were to be visited at the hospital by Dr. Chan Hyeok Jeon and Dr. Eunice Park, I’m very thankful to them and their dedication to my country. My heart was so happy when I met them this time, not in Honduras, but in Korea.

    Dec 14, 2023

  • 1) Please introduce yourself. My name is HENG Chhayroud, I am 30 years old. I am the youngest child in a family with 4 members. I have one older sister and one older brother. 2) Where is your working place back in your country and what is your specialty? Currently, I work as a general cardiologist at Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia. 3) How did you get to know Severance? Why did you choose Severance as your training hospital? Well, it's a long story. First, I got to know Severance from a senior of mine who was also a fellow in electrophysiology at severance. Then I got the chance to meet Professor Chun HWANG in Cambodia who introduced me to Professor Hui-Nam PAK, my responsible professor at Severance Hospital. I choose Severance Hospital for my fellowship because this hospital is well-known as one of the biggest hospitals in Korea and also in Asia. With the advanced technique here I believe I could become a well-trained doctor to serve back my country when I finish. 4) How long is your training period in Korea? My training period is for 1 year which started from 1st March 2023 until the end of February 2024. 5) Which area did you focus on during your fellowship at Severance? I am currently a fellow in Electrophysiology, a subspecialty of cardiology that enrolls in the treatment of patients with heart rhythm disorders. And my supervising professor is Professor Hui-Nam PAK. 6) What is the most impressive feature of Severance Hospital? Severance Hospital has a long history and is renowned for its high-quality medical services, advanced technologies, and skilled medical professionals. The hospital’s state-of-the-art facilities and cutting-edge technologies create an environment that fosters learning and innovation. Having an opportunity to train at Severance Hospital is a transformative journey that shapes me into a competent, compassionate, and globally-minded healthcare professional. The combination of outstanding medical resources, expert guidance, diverse patient cases, and exposure to a unique cultural setting creates an unforgettable and enriching experience that will leave a lasting impression on my medical career. 7) What are the specific contents of your fellowship program at Severance? The specific contents of my fellowship here is electrophysiology which focus on the both medical treatment and intervention like radiofrequency ablation or cryoablation of arrhythmia those include supraventricular tachycardia (SVT), Atrial fibrillation (AF), ventricular arrhythmia (VA). Furthermore, also I am training in managing the Cardiac Implantable Electronic devices include Pacemaker (PM), intracardiac implant defibrillator (ICD) and Cardiac resynchronize therapy (CRT). At last, of course I also enroll in some of research activities too. 8) If you were to get the chance to come back, which field of clinical study would you like to focus on? If I have the chance to comeback, ventricular arrhythmia is one of the things I would like to focus on. It’s a life-threatening condition, but yet by understanding the mechanism of the disease we can help to treat those patients that need help. Also, it is also interesting as when we talk about ablation procedure it’s a kind of brainstorming, many things that we need to keep in mind included understanding well about cardiac anatomy, localization of the focus using ECG, imaging, mapping technique and signal interpretation. Additionally, I am interested in Left atrial appendage device occlude and I would like to dig deep into the conduction system pacing as well, as these are the new developing technique in electrophysiology. 9) Who are you most thankful for at Severance(who helped you the most) & why? First of all, I am extremely grateful to my responsible professor Hui-Nam PAK, he made significant contributions to the field of electrophysiology and has a reputable profile in the medical community. He keeps inspiring me, teaching me and also give me very good advice everyday so I can keep on a good progress in my training. Also, I would like to thank to Professor Chun HWANG, visiting professor of Severance, for his sponsorship toward my training here, without him I might not be possible to train here. He is a pioneer and world known Electrophysiologist. I learned so much things from him especially in complicated ECG analysis and EGM signal interpretation. Additionally, I also thank to all the professor at the EP lab including Professor Bo-young JOUNG, Professor Jae-son UHM, Professor Tae-Hoon KIM, Professor Dae-Hoon KIM. They are very professional and kind toward all the fellows. I deeply appreciate their kind assistance. Lastly, many thank for the kindness and generous of all the EP fellows, EP lab team including EP nurses and EP technicians. 10) What was your first impression of Korea? Certainly, Rapid technology innovation and advancement is the first thing that impress me but also there are many more things like rich in cultural heritage, traditional villages with a unique architecture. I also like Warm hospitality of the people here and I feel amaze that Korea is a very safe country to live, even in late night I can walk alone without worrying about the robbery or something. There are also many and many more thing to impress including delicious cuisine, Beautiful landscape and also the strong work ethic and commitment of Korean peoples. 11) What is the best memory so far during your stay here? There have many best memories here starting from the first month here in Korea, I have the chance to meet friends from the others countries during the Prime course training of the international fellowship and we still hangout sometime. Then I still remember the first time I am successful in positioning the catheter in the coronary sinus and also my first time in successful did the transseptal puncture. I also feel amaze about the view and architecture of the many palaces and museum I have been too. Bukchon Hanok village is also an interest place to visit for me. And I am looking forward to explore more amazing places of this wonderful country.

    Oct 24, 2023

  • 1) Please introduce yourself. My name is Lim Shu Yu, I am 38 years old. I came from a family of teachers and am the eldest in my family, I have a younger sister and also a younger brother, and of course not to forget our precious family dog, Mishka! 2) Where is your working place back in your country and what is your specialty? I work in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia. I am an Upper Gastrointestinal and Bariatric Surgeon. 3) How did you get to know Severance? Why did you choose Severance as your training hospital? Well, it started with my mentor back in Malaysia. He had trained in robotic surgery at Severance, and I could see the profound impact the training had on his surgical skills. When the time came for me to choose a place for fellowship training, he was the one who suggested Severance. He described it as "the best robotic surgical center" in the world, and coming from someone I respect, this recommendation carried a lot of weight. Furthermore, Severance is renowned for its pioneering work in the field of robotic surgery. Knowing that I wanted to specialize in this area, it just seemed like the perfect fit. The opportunity to learn from Professor Hyung Woo Jin, who is a world-class expert in robotic gastric surgery, was something I couldn't pass up. 4) How long is your training period in Korea? My training period is 6 months, from March 2023- August 2023. 5) Which area did you focus on during your fellowship at Severance? My training has been primarily centred on robotic upper gastrointestinal surgeries. In particular, we've been focusing on gastric cancers, which is a prevalent issue in this region. Severance also handles a high number of laparoscopic cases, It's a valuable opportunity to refine my skills in both types of minimally invasive surgeries and understand their distinct advantages in different clinical situations. My supervising professor is Prof Hyung Woo Jin, who has performed over 6000 cases of both robotic and laparoscopic gastric surgeries to date. 6) What is the most impressive feature of Severance Hospital? The most impressive feature of Severance Hospital is the hospital's commitment to integrating the latest technologies into medical practice. The state-of-the-art infrastructure coupled with a dedicated focus on innovation is truly amazing. Besides having an exceptional robotic surgery system, they are also developing an AI navigation system that will improve precision in surgeries and reduces complications, 7) What are the specific contents of your fellowship program at Severance? My fellowship program at Severance is centred on Robotic and Minimally Invasive Surgery in the Upper Gastrointestinal Field. This involves training and practice in performing and managing surgeries using robotic assistance, especially in gastric cancer. The fellowship also provides opportunities for research, allowing me to be involve in clinical studies and trials. Furthermore, the program encourages us to participate in various conferences and workshops. I have had the opportunity to participate in the Korean Society of Endo-laparoscopic and Robotic Surgery 2023 (KSERS 2023) conference and International Gastric Cancer Congress 2023 (IGCC 2023) which have further increased my knowledge and understanding of this field. 8) If you were to get the chance to come back, which field of clinical study would you like to focus on? If given the chance to come back, I would love to focus on clinical research revolving around advancing the scope of minimally invasive surgical techniques in upper gastrointestinal surgeries. More specifically, I'd be interested in how artificial intelligence can further improve surgical outcomes in the field of upper gastrointestinal surgery. 9) Who are you most thankful for at Severance(who helped you the most) & why? I've been incredibly fortunate to work with a group of supportive and talented individuals at Severance, and it's hard to single out just one person. Of course, I'm immensely thankful to Prof Hyung Woo Jin. His guidance and expertise have been invaluable in shaping my professional growth, and his unwavering dedication to the field of surgery is a constant source of inspiration. Equally, I must thank the other professors, fellows, and residents in the department. Their patience and willingness to answer my questions have made my training here smooth and enlightening. The hospital's nurses and physician assistants also deserve a shout out, they've provided invaluable help along the way, their dedication and efficiency still amaze me up to this day. I'd be remiss not to mention my wonderful international friends. We've had a blast exploring Seoul together, and their companionship has made my time here feel more like home. And finally, a huge thanks to Mr. Hans from the international office. His assistance and support have made navigating life in a new country a whole lot easier. 10) What was your first impression of Korea? From the moment I arrived, I was amazed by how modern and safe it felt, especially as a woman traveling alone. The transport system was one of the first things that stood out to me – it's simply one of the best I've ever seen. Oh, and let's not forget the coffee. As a self-confessed coffee addict, I can honestly say I found my personal heaven here. The cafes are not only incredibly aesthetically pleasing, but they also serve some of the best coffee I've ever tasted. So yeah, my first impression of Korea? It’s modern, safe, beautiful, and delicious – all at once! 11)What is the best memory so far during your stay here? My time in Korea has been filled with so many memorable moments, of course, gaining knowledge and experience in robotic gastric surgeries has been an incredible journey, but I think the friendships I've developed here have been equally meaningful. I've been fortunate to connect with both Koreans and other international fellows, and we've had such a blast together. Exploring the local attractions, hiking in the beautiful outdoors, and indulging in Korea's delicious food and drink – these shared experiences have made my stay here unforgettable. Honestly, they've become like a second family to me here in Korea. The camaraderie, the mutual support, and the sheer fun we've had together – these are things I'll always cherish.

    Oct 24, 2023

  • 1) Please introduce yourself. I am AlGheryafi Yamin, 38 years old, from Saudi Arabia. In addition to me, my family consists of my wife, who is a pharmacist and a two year old son. 2) Where is your working place back in your country and what is your specialty? I am working in Qatif Central Hospital. Qatif Central Hospital is one of the major hospitals in the eastern region of Saudi Arabia, which includes most of the medical and surgical subspecialties. It is also considered as trauma center, as it receives a lot of trauma patients who require surgical interventions. Since the end of 2009, I joined Qatif Central Hospital and worked as orthopaedic resident, then in 2011, I joined the Saudi board program of orthopedic surgery and took training rotations in most hospitals in the eastern region and succeeded in obtaining the certificate of Saudi board at the end of 2016. Since then, I have been working at Qatif Central Hospital as orthopaedic surgeon, in addition to being the local program director of orthopaedic trainees and active lecturer and speaker in local orthopaedic surgery conferences and workshops. 3) How did you get to know Severance? Why did you choose Severance as your training hospital? South Korea is highly recognizable area to conduct clinical fellowship training as it has highly advanced medical services, excellent organized hospitals and highly qualified and excellent skill-full professors known worldwide in addition to their academic passion and research. Severance hospital is one of the best institutions in South Korea and it is well known worldwide. It has very excellent established atmosphere for trainees. A lot of our colleagues with different surgical subspecialties who conducted their fellowship in severance hospital, they are qualified with excellent skills in addition to the academic personal aspect. I have talked with some colleagues who joined knee sport and arthroscopic surgery department in severance hospital, all of them talked a lot about very skills full and highly qualified professors, quality and efficiency of training and they advised me to seek an opportunity to join knee sport and arthroscopic surgery fellowship training in Severance hospital. 4) How long is your training period in Korea? 15 months 5) Which area did you focus on during your fellowship at Severance? My training is mainly on knee sport and arthroscopic surgery. I am proud to train under supervision of Professor Jung, Min. and also it is my pleasure to have the opportunity to train with professor Chong-Hyuk Choi. 6)What is the most impressive feature of Severance Hospital? Severance hospital has excellent developed and established facilities, technology and structures that are critical to prioritize the patient’s comfort and convenience at each stage of their journey. Severance hospital is a prime example of what can be achieved through harmony and dedicated work. With a vast number of facilities, beds, and operation rooms, the staff consistently demonstrate their utmost commitment to excellence. Each member strives to give their best performance and collectively work towards being the best they can be. 7)What are the specific contents of your fellowship program at Severance? My clinical fellowship training is knee sport and arthroscopic surgery, mainly deal with knee different soft tissue pathology, cartilage defect and bony malalignment. 8)If you were to get the chance to come back, which field of clinical study would you like to focus on? If I am lucky and have the chance to comeback, I would like to be involved in the same department of knee sport and arthroscopic surgery. The complexity of knee joint anatomy, the variety of pathology, the different surgical techniques and the high level of surgical skills required, makes it truly a mind stimulating field. Knee Sport and arthroscopic surgery requires a higher level of technical skills. This makes it more challenging and hence more enjoyable. My goal is to achieve technical and clinical excellence in the diagnosis and treatment of sports conditions of the knee. 9)Who are you most thankful for at Severance(who helped you the most) & why? Since my first day at Severance Hospital I have found support from everyone. My professors are always welcoming to scientific discussion at any time and they guide me to any orthopaedic conference or workshop that help me in my training. All Korean colleagues (fellows, residents, nurses and all hospital staff) are very supportive all the time and offer to help me whenever I need. Also I should mention Mr. Jae Hun Han in the International Office. I am always in contact with him and he welcomes any inquiry or assistance at any time. 10)What was your first impression of Korea? South Korea is one of the top developed countries and known as the global head in technological and industrial sectors, but what makes South Korea a much-loved country among all world is its beautiful diverse culture. South Korea has its unique culture, character, cloth, and food that differs from the world countries. Korean People are very organized and raised on respecting everybody. Diligent and hard work, filial piety and humbleness are characteristics respected by Koreans. In addition to the beauty of nature, parks, gardens, lakes and mountains, South Korea has very advance infrastructure, highly organized, advance and modern intra and inter cities transportation networks, in addition to enormous high rise buildings everywhere and any one visit South Korea will notice they take care of every single detail to make the all aspects of public facilities perfect and accessible all time. 11)What is the best memory so far during your stay here? I have many beautiful memories in South Korea. During all weekends, I gather with my friends, we have a tour in Seoul or around where there are a lots of amazing garden, mountains and other nature and then we take dinner together in different restaurants in Seoul which is special experience I will never forget.

    Aug 2, 2023

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