FIENS CHAIR's REPORT
October 2, 2015
Dear Colleague and Supporters of FIENS,
FIENS has always depended on the generosity of neurosurgeons worldwide. This is a mission of all people including our lay associates and public board members. With your help, the Foundation for International Education in Neurological Surgery (FIENS) has continued to grow and expand our influence toward our mission of improving global health, specifically the training of neurosurgeons in developing countries on multiple continents. I am pleased to report that in the past year we have continued to greatly expand our goals in communication and education. We have pioneered educational programs including electronic communication and expanded our concept in developing dyads between programs in the developed and the developing world. Specifically, we have expanded partnering programs in Uganda, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Nicaragua, and Myanmar while preparing on-the-ground assessments for needs, educational equipment, and supplies in multiple other sites. By working with partnering organizations, governments and volunteers, new facilities have been built in Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar and we continue to work to standardize worldwide education and increase our network of volunteers.
During this past year we have highlighted four major goals of the organization:
1. Communication of curriculum, case studies and conferences by electronic means to allow continuous links to the training sites rather than episodic. Continued hardware and software work is ongoing and continued financial and technical assistance with this major goal is still needed.
2. A scholarship program for trainees has been developed to allow them to finish certain aspects of their training, increase their connection to the dyad developed program, and in some cases support them in training in their native continent.
3. Standards for quality control and site visits, both in person and electronic, have been expanded to generate a common core and base-standard of care worldwide.
4. A program for secure shipment and maintenance of necessary equipment has been instituted.
The results have been substantial. We will be participating in the first Boot Camp training in the developing world this year in South America and hope to expand this to consistent curriculum in Asia and Africa. We have greatly increased the number of men and women in neurosurgical training in Sub Saharan Africa, taking an area previously devoid of training and developing infrastructure for their success long into the future.
It is through the very needed and very appreciated support of people like you, both financial support as well as volunteering time and effort, that we succeed and have a hope to change the future for literally millions of people worldwide. We ask your continued support. By being a donor, you are allowing us to achieve these goals today and to serve education, infrastructure and medical care. As a volunteer, your individual efforts may be realized for a common good. Please make a donation today either by returning the enclosed envelope or by using our website at www.fiens.org to make a secure online donation. As always, all the members of the Foundation for International Education in Neurological Surgery appreciate your efforts, your support, and your inspiration for this most important mission of caring providing specialized care to patients worldwide.
Robert J. Dempsey, MD, FACS
Chairman, Foundation for International Education in Neurological Surgery