Find out more about MSF's operations, mission, and it's principles.
Surgeons are responsible for surgery intervention and post-operative surgical care in line with MSF protocols. They work in close collaboration with the operating theatre staff and interact with doctors and nurses from the emergency, intensive care surgical departments and/or other medical departments. They provide guidance to and oversee training for the surgical team. Surgeons account for their work to the medical advisor, the hospital director or the project coordinator depending on the programme's organisation.
The humanitarian surgery practiced by MSF for the last 40 years often rolls out in war contexts. It is in constant evolution, developing solutions better adapted to field realities and integrating ever more demanding standards of medical practice.
In 2021, 40,820 interventions were performed on 17,888 patients. 2021 is a record year in terms of interventions, exceeding 2019, which also passed the 40,000 procedures. MSF Surgical activities take place in 14 countries with 1 to 5 surgical projects per country.
There are 119 departures in 2021, including 37 first assignments (FA) (compared to 82 departures in 2020, including 22 FA). The international surgeons come from 29 countries, representing the 5 continents.The detailed statistics by specialty are as follows: 49 departures of general surgeons (including 8 FA), 28 orthopedic surgeons (including 12 FA), 1 vascular surgeon, 8 plastic surgeons (including 1 FA), 9 pediatric surgeons (including 3 FA), and 24 obgyns (including 4 specializing in oncology and 13 FAs among all gynecologists).
A night duty roster ensures 24/7 care.
provides surgical consultations,
informs the patient about his condition and the surgery proposed,
obtains the patient's signed agreement to surgery,
evaluates the risk of operating, in collaboration with the anaesthetist.
performs emergency and elective surgical procedures in line with MSF protocols,
coordinates surgical activities and takes responsibility for the quality of interventions,
oversees the rational use of surgical supplies and instruments during procedures,
draws up a post-operative report following each procedure.
checks that patients are re-allocated to the appropriate hospital department depending on the different pathologies (infected, non-affected, orthopaedic, burns, etc.),
conducts rounds and follow-up rounds in the surgical and intensive care departments in collaboration with the anaesthetist, the operating theatre nurse and the department supervisor,
ensures the application of MSF protocols (antibiotherapy, dressing protocols, etc.) and rational medicine use.
ensures proper pre and post-operative prescription follow-up in liaison with the anaesthetist,
follows up patients hospitalised in associated departments (gynaecology-obstetrics, eg) in collaboration with the healthcare team.
oversees and monitors his own and his colleagues' adherence to hygiene rules concerning the protection of patients and staff in the operating theatre (decontamination, sterilisation, etc.)
knows the steps to take in the event of accidental exposure to blood (AEB).
collaborates with the anaesthetist in the collection of quantitative surgical and anaesthetist data, check the quality of the data encoding,
participates in drawing up and analysing morbidity-mortality reports with the anaesthetist, the medical advisor and/or the hospital director or project coordinator.
participates in medical meetings, notably the peri-operative morbidity-mortality meeting,
works in close collaboration with the emergency, intensive care etc. departments,
provides support to other departments if needed.
provides ongoing guidance and training to the surgical team in line with MSF guidelines and protocols,
can be asked to support training projects (e.g.: first aid, etc.)
He upholds medical confidentiality in all areas of his activity.
He is vigilant at all times and informs his line manager in the event of medical error.