Pan-African Paediatric Surgery E-learning Programme (PAPSEP)

Scottish global health charity Kids OR is investing in the first Pan-African Paediatric Surgery E-Learning Programme (PAPSEP) to help train paediatric surgeons across Africa.

The e-learning platform is built by the RCSI Institute of Global Surgery, with content provided by the West African College of Surgeons (WACS) and the College of Surgeons of East Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA).

We work together to provide a new and bespoke teaching resource mapped to the curricula of both training programmes. It is one of the first online teaching programmes for children's surgery that focuses on low-resource settings.

Between them, the two colleges cover 32 African countries with a combined population of around 800 million. In funding this project, Kids OR has facilitated a new link between the two colleges who work together to provide this new resource. 


PAPSEP provides paediatric surgical trainees throughout Africa with a three-year online training programme designed to complement the clinical training they receive on the wards and in the operating theatres of their own hospitals. The course content is available via a Moodle-based platform of interactive learning, with three self-guided modules and one live Zoom discussion delivered each month.  

The platform also supports existing surgical and anaesthetic teams who care for children; providing them with a resource to refresh knowledge and revise detailed procedures ahead of operations.

Over 100 paediatric surgical trainees from 15 countries are enrolled in the Programme and it is estimated that 325 paediatric surgeons will graduate from it in five years – a significant contribution to scaling up the paediatric surgical care workforce across sub-Saharan Africa.

The training programme launched in May 2021 at the World Health Assembly in Geneva and is available on the COSECSA and Kids OR e-learning platforms.

Watch the video

The team

A large and diverse team from the four partner organisations, including over 60 paediatric surgeon content authors and editors. Instructional design is led by ELearnSol.

RCSI project management is undertaken by:

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