AO Alliance and AOSpine collaborate for better spinal care in Kenya


Over 5 million people die from injuries in the world every year. And 90% of those deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. The numbers are even more staggering if one looks at those that survive with disabilities. Seventy-five percent of these disabilities are related to musculoskeletal and spinal impairments.

AO Alliance and AOSpine collaborated to deliver the second AO Alliance Spinal Course ”“ Trauma and Infections in Sub-Saharan Africa. There is great need for caring for spinal trauma and spinal infections in resource-poor countries.

With the input and support of both AOSpine Middle East and Northern Africa Board, regional and Kenyan national faculty, 48 participants were able to improve their knowledge, skills and attitudes in managing common spine injuries and infections.

Regional course chair Mohammad El-Sharkawi from Egypt, national course co-chairs Mustafa Khanbhai and Elijah Muteti, as well as regional faculty Alex van der Horst from Namibia, (AO Alliance task force member) and Atiq Uz Zaman from Pakistan all contributed to this new collaboration in Kenya.

Kenya has many up-and-coming spine surgeons in need of proper guidance and training opportunities. This course is a stepping-stone to grow and encourage many to continue in their professional development and also to improve the care of those who sustain spinal trauma and spinal infections in low- and middle-income countries.

AO Alliance and AOSpine are working on how best to spread this educational event in other Sub-Saharan African countries for 2020 and 2021.