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Who we are

The College of Surgeons of East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA) is non-profit making professional body that fosters postgraduate education in surgery and provides surgical training throughout the East, Central and Southern Africa region. The College delivers a common surgical training programme with a common examination and an internationally recognized surgical qualification in its Membership programme in Basic Surgery and Fellowship Programme in Orthopedics; Pediatric orthopedics; Otorhinolaryngology; Urology; Pediatric Surgery; Neurosurgery; Cardiothoracic; Plastic Surgery and General Surgery.

The college has created a training pathway which harnesses existing, but often underutilized resources (hospitals and surgeons) for surgical training. In addition to advancing education and training, the college is also involved in advancing standards of practice and research in surgical care. The College currently operates 14 countries in the Sub-Saharan region: Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Sudan and Botswana.

Our primary objective is to advance education, training, standards, research & practice in surgical care in this region. COSECSA shapes and leads the training of surgeons in the Sub-Saharan region. We deliver a common surgical training programme with a common examination and an internationally recognised surgical qualification. Admission to the College is open to all registered medical practitioners who comply with the professional requirements for admission.


  • COSECSA offers a unique in-service training and an innovative e-learning platform. COSECSA’s training programme is unique in that it is primarily undertaken in a trainee’s country of origin. Research has proven that locally led and delivered training improves surgeon retention with upto 95% of the COSECSA graduates  remaining in the region post-qualification
  • COSECSA has 139 accredited hospitals based in rural and urban areas.
  • COSECSA has   630 accredited trainers including 71 Master trainers.
  • COSECSA has graduated 758 specialist surgeons since 2004
  • COSECSA currently  has 1100+ trainees enrolled in training programmes.
  • Research shows that COSECSA graduates experience significant career advancement.
  • COSECSA has a Bespoke Surgical Electronic Log-book that is used universally.
  • COSECSA has a Court of Examiners
  • COSECSA has a School for Surgeons E Learning platform
  • COSECSA holds an International Scientific Conference annually
  • COSECSA short courses are organised throughout the region
  • COSECSA has an IRB registered with UN department of Health and Human Resources
  • COSECSA has been in operation for 24 years.
  • The COSECSA Headquarters is based in Arusha, Tanzania.

Why is Surgery Important ?

  • 6.5% of the global burden of disease is amenable to surgery.
  • Africa has approximately 25% of the burden of the world’s diseases and only 1.3% of the world health workforce.
  • Most surgeons are based in urban areas

COSECSA main Goals for the next Four Years

To Graduate 1000 Surgeons by 2025; Achieve Excellence in Training and Research; Maintain Best Practice in Examination and Assessment and Build Organizational Excellence and Financial Sustainability.