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WGO Training Center Updates

Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology: September 2012 - Volume 46 - Issue 8 - p i–ii
doi: 10.1097/MCG.0b013e3182667efb
WGO News

World Gastroenterology Organisation, WGO Foundation, Milwaukee, WI

The author declares that he has nothing to disclose.

Reprints: Leah Kopp, World Gastroenterology Organisation, WGO Foundation, 555 East Wells Street, Suite 1100, Milwaukee, WI 53202 (e-mail:

WGO Is Pleased to Bring You Periodic Updates on the 14 Training Centers & the Wonderful Work They Are Accomplishing

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The 11th Post-Graduate Training Course in Gastroenterology took place from January 26 to February 4, 2012, through the World Gastroenterology Organisation’s (WGO) RTC (WGO-RTC).

This is a unique training program for the region that takes place in an ideal location that also offers the exchange of ideas and experiences. This is a place where all participants can renew acquaintances and make new friends. This Center, which falls under the l'Université Mohammed 5-Souissi, is the fruit of an agreement between the Ministry of Higher Education and the WGO-RTC.

This center is part of the Mohamed V-Souissi University and is located at the Medicine and Pharmacy Faculty of Rabat, near the academic Hospital Ibn Sina.



Located at the Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy of Rabat, the Training Center benefits fully due to the proximity of the Ibn Sina University Hospital ( It is open to all French gastroenterologists, particularly in Africa who wish to improve their theoretical and practical knowledge in the field of hepatology, gastroenterology, and digestive oncology.

The objectives set for it are highly relevant:

  1. To promote the highest standards in training in gastroenterology
  2. To promulgate the best practice guidelines in gastroenterology
  3. To develop a curriculum for training based on current science, ethical principles, and relevance to local and regional health care needs
  4. To expose trainees to the most current knowledge in gastroenterology
  5. To foster interactions between international and regional experts in the field of gastroenterology

Since opening, the Center has organized an annual course for 10 to 15 days for groups of over 60 gastroenterologists ranging from 40 to 76 physicians each group, a total to date of around 700 physicians representing 24 different countries: Afghanistan, Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Congo Brazzaville, Cote d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea, Lebanon, Mali, Morocco, Madagascar, Mauritania, Palestine, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Syria, Tanzania, Chad, Togo, and Tunisia. WGO-RTC also offers trainees particularly in Africa, the possibility of a long-term training ranging from several months to 5 years. Thus, the Center claims the privilege of providing some African countries with their first specialists.

The educational program is composed of theoretical and practical training. The teaching techniques and endoscopic ultrasound diagnosis and treatment enable the focus on practical training. Various tutorials offer the ability to customize the educational program. This ranges from training on simulators, mechanical or computerized (Symbionix), to the acquisition of several of endoscopic procedures on the most diverse pig stomachs (EASIE model). For participants already familiar with endoscopy, it was decided, because of experiences, to replace live-transmission from the hospital by a fellowship program that allows small groups to work with experts.

This learning a la carte allows each participant to follow regardless of their level of training. An emphasis is given to education in the form of interactive workshops for presentation of clinical cases. The multimedia library, which is continuously evolving, provides trainees with electronic documents selected according to their teaching. Since acquiring videoconferencing equipment in 2006, telemedicine has been its hobbyhorse, with the goal of giving gastroenterologists from other countries the opportunity to benefit from these courses.

Supervision is provided by experts internationally recognized for their expertise and teaching skills. They have come from different countries such as Austria, Belgium, Cameroon, Canada, England, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Italy, Libya, Morocco, Portugal, Senegal, Sweden, Tunisia, and Turkey.

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The Bolivian-Japanese Institute of Gastroenterology (IGBJ) established the WGO Training Center with the mission to carry out yearly courses designed to complement and improve specialists training in Gastroenterology, as acquired in their home countries. The Course program is defined in conjunction by the WGO Education and Training Committee, the Bolivian Society of Gastroenterology, and the IGBJ, according to regional needs in training and an ethical approach to patient care.

The March 28 to 31, 2012 VIII International Course on Advances in Gastroenterology and Digestive Endoscopy included basic sciences relevant to Gastroenterology and the latest concepts of gastrointestinal disease, with emphasis in endoscopic diagnosis and treatment of digestive diseases, given through formal lectures, interactive seminars, and live demonstrations.

As in previous versions, the program was designed to comply strictly with the goals recommended by WGO:



  1. Promote mechanisms of interaction between international and regional specialists in the fields of gastroenterology, endoscopy, and gastrointestinal surgery, incorporating a new generation of specialists, as the core of the program.
  2. Contribute to strengthening the concept of medicine with a social vision, in line with regional realities and needs.

The new generation of trainees was represented by 30 specialists who arrived to La Paz from countries of South and Central America, who along with specialists from Bolivia totaled 220 participants. Ram Chuttani, Prateek Sharma, Ricardo Morgenstern, Federico Villamil, Walton Albuquerque, Everson Artifon, and Carmelo Blasco were the international guest lectures.

The first 2 days of the academic program were developed in the IGBJ facilities. In the third day, the course was conducted during a boat trip on Lake Titicaca (4000 m above sea level). The world’s highest altitude course was a novel and interesting experience that allowed to better meet the objective of interaction between local and international specialists.

In the fourth day, as in previous years, participants worked in the Copacabana Community Hospital where everyone assisted in treating 197 patients with digestive diseases and also with health education programs for the community.

The degree of satisfaction of the trainees was evaluated at the end of the course through a survey that took into account organizational, academic, and social impact; 87% rated as excellent and 13% as very good.

For more information on WGO’s Training Centers, visit

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.