The next PIOA module will be held at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole (TTM) Hospital in Apia, Samoa from 13 March to 1 April 2023. The topics covered will include Paediatric orthopaedics (13-18 March), Tumour (20-24 March), and Infection, Inflammation and Professional topics (25 March to 1 April).
During 2 weeks Module in Suva I have learnt a lot about Hip and Spine. The Module is very practical and made it easy to understand how to performed surgery from different surgical approaches to Hip and Spine.
I also was able to see different cases in the ward, and was guided by Senior Orthopaedic consultants and best lecturers from Australia and New Zealand. I’m Very Happy to attend this Module in Suva and my Gratitude to PIOA and to CMWH (staff and Patients) as well.
Agnes Auto (Solomon Islands)
This learning experience has added value to my contribution in reducing Disability Advanced Life Years (DALY) in the Solomon Islands.
I feel more confident with the knowledge and skills learned, and am challenging myself to put these into practice the once I return home, to work with my Senior Colleagues .
I am thankful for the opportunity to grow with PIOA and grateful to the SPC for their support and enabling me to attend.
Clay Siosi (Solomon Islands)
Spine – the learning I acquired through this training has broadened my understanding and management of spine pathologies or problems I see in my home country. It provide focused approach in identifying and managing my patients.
Hip – wealth of knowledge from the members of faculty. I learned about hip and pelvic trauma management. Their experience and expertise knowledge has opened up another level of understanding…
Deacon Teapa (Cook Islands)
I would to say thank you to PIOA and SPC for giving this valuable opportunity for being part of this organization. Coming back from nearly 12 years of academic hiatus I find the last 2 weeks on the PIOA modules has been fulfilling and enriching to my personal professional development. The course has provided me an opportunity to reinforce my knowledge and past experience, learn new things and especially
operative skills sets from some of the best orthopaedic surgeons in Australasia. I look forward towards the next modules in the coming months and years.
In other developments for PIOA, we had a long-awaited meeting with FNU and major stakeholders in the Surgical & Orthopaedic department to address the urgent need to develop orthopedic care in Fiji. This meeting also helped address a lot of issues regarding training and it was a milestone for both PIOA and FNU. The future looks bright and looking forward to building quality orthopedic care in the Pacific, so watch this space.
The highlight of the module was the exit examination which was made up of 7 sections. There were 2 written papers, 2 clinical vivas where candidates had to examine patients and formulate a diagnosis and management plan. There were 3 computer vivas (2 in operative surgery and 1 on investigation and diagnostic imaging).
Dr Richard Lander from Palmerston North New Zealand was the chief Examiner, and Dr John North from Brisbane Australia was his assistant. Two of our graduates Dr Stephen Kodovaru from Solomon Islands & Dr Tu’uau Shaun Mauiliu from Samoa, were invited as co-examiners during the weeklong examination process as part of succession planning for PIOA.
Dr Areta Samuelu & Dr Pita Sovanivalu successfully completed the final exam and will be eligible to graduate with a Master of Surgery (Orthopedics) from the National University of Samoa in Apia in April 2023.
The lectures for the hip modules were delivered by Dr Vaughan Poutawera & Dr Andrew Vane from Tauranga New Zealand, Dr Kaushik Hazratwalla from Townsville & Dr Des Soares from Brisbane Australia.
In this module, the students were taught a systematic approach to diagnosis and management of traumatic and degenerative conditions affecting the hip. This included clinical history taking and a thorough clinical examination with emphasis on a systematic approach to the management of osteomyelitis, septic arthritis and degenerative conditions such as osteoarthritis. In addition, there were focussed lectures and practicals on the management of trauma affecting the pelvis, acetabulum and femur.
During the afternoon practical sessions, each student was given opportunity to deal with different conditions affecting the hip from the femur, hip joint and acetabulum. This was a very useful exercise to help them recognise and learn the up-to-date management of hip condition. One of the popular sessions was teaching cementing techniques to the trainees and this gave them options in dealing with difficult and complex cases.
In the mornings ward rounds were continued as usual, making the students more confident in their orthopaedic history taking and examination. The module was also concluded with an end of block written examination.
The lectures for the Spine modules were delivered by Dr David Bartle from Tauranga New Zealand, Dr Ian Cheung & Dr Des Soares from Brisbane & Dr Michelle Atkinson from Sydney, Australia, and Dr James Tewa’ani from Solomon Islands.
In the Spine module students were taught a systematic approach to history taking, clinical examination and investigation with a focus on common spine orthopedic conditions. The practical sessions were aimed at common spine management options including cervical & lumbar spondylosis and stabilisation and internal fixation of spine trauma. Small group workshops focused on using Gardner Wells tongs/ halo traction using a model.
A novel condom model was used to practice dural repair. Sawbones were used to demonstarte pedicle scre placement and laminectomy / spinal decompression. Other practical sessions looked at rehabilitation for spinal patients and other malignancies that affect the spine.
Each morning we commenced with a ward round seeing two patients and getting the students to present the history and clinical signs of the patients. Their management was then discussed and suggestions for improvement were made. This was a useful exercise as we were able to improve clinical skills. It was also helpful to try and elucidate clinical reasoning and decision making and help with developing these skills. The students enjoyed having expert advice on the management of elective conditions and trauma affecting the spine.
At the end of the module the students’ knowledge was tested with a written paper examination.
At the PIOA module held in Suva, Fiji, we celebrate the success of two of our trainees in their exit exam. We welcome Areta Samuelu (Apia, Samoa) and Pita Sovanivalu (Labasa, Fiji) as Fellows of PIOA. The examiners were Dr Richard Lander (New Zealand/Aotearoa), Dr John North (Australia), Dr Shaun Mauiliu (Samoa) and Dr Stephen Kodovaru (Solomon Islands).
After almost 3 years due to the COVID pandemic PIOA will hold the Spine and Hip module in Suva Fiji in co-operation wth the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services and CWM Hospital, Suva. We are grateful to the Pacific Eye Institute which is kindly hosting us at their conference room. The module will be held between 12 – 24 September 2022.
We look forward to seeing trainees from Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Samoa, Kiribati and Cook Islands.