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BACKGROUND: The shortage of essential surgical care in sub-Saharan Africa is a worldwide problem. Lack of healthcare workers, surgeons and very limited resources are the reason for this critical health crisis. Furthermore in Africa many physicians as soon as they get a degree emigrate in more attractive countries.
METHODS: “Multidisciplinary teaching support to a new Faculty of Medicine in N’Djamena – Chad” is a teaching cooperation program between «Sapienza» University of Rome and the University Hospital “Le Bon Samaritain” in N’Djamena, Chad. The project started in 2010, with the aim of cooperating in teaching medical students of African origin and in training Italian residents in sub-Saharan surgical and internal pathologies. In Chad the greatest surgical burden (about 11% of the total global diseases) is created by injuries, cancers, congenital anomalies, appendicitis, bowel obstructions, hernias, abscesses (by amebiasis or others) and obstetric emergencies.
CONCLUSIONS: Up till now healthcare in Africa especially in rural areas has been provided by international organisations, we believe that academic collaborations between high-income and low income Nations is necessary to meet the real needs of the african surgical workforce; at the same time it is very useful for store of knowledge of our residents.