In this issue we introduce Kulwinder Dua (USA). He has been appointed as Co-Chair of the new WEO ARA Project Ad Hoc Committee on the basis of his extensive work in Africa. Dr Dua and Professor Lars Aabakken (Norway, also Co-Chair) will lead the way in supporting and developing quality endoscopy in partnership with collaborating institutions on the African continent.

Dr Kulwinder Dua (USA), Co-Chair of the WEO Activities to Reach Africa (ARA) Project Ad Hoc Committee

Dr Dua says: “My vision for this Committee is to focus on, but not limit to, underserved regions of Africa. Although the needs in each country may be different, the broad goals are to facilitate educational activities, such as local hands-on training courses on standard and advanced GI endoscopy procedures, conduct workshops with lectures, provide electronic/web-based teaching aids and programs, and promote trainee exchanges between centers of excellence. Collaborative research will be highly encouraged and supported.”

Dr Dua MD, DMSc, FACP, FRCP (Edinburgh), FRCP (London), FASGE, has been recently appointed to the Committee on the basis of his extensive work in Africa.

Kulwinder S. Dua completed his initial medical training in India (MBBS, MD Internal Medicine).  He completed his training in gastroenterology and hepatology in the United Kingdom and subsequently was elected a Fellow of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of both London and Edinburgh. In 1992 he moved to the US, joining the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Medicine and Pediatrics and is a Professor at the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. He is US board-certified in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology.

Dr Dua’s primary interest has been in advanced interventional endoscopy. He is an inventor, responsible for several patents and FDA-cleared devices. His other area of interest is aero-digestive tract physiology and pathophysiology, including airway defense mechanisms against aspiration.

Dr Dua has over 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals and is on the editorial board of several journals. He has been invited as faculty to participate in GI conferences worldwide (for example in the USA, Canada, Brazil, UK, Netherlands, Austria, Italy, France, Poland, Switzerland, Sweden, Israel, Oman, Sudan, Nigeria, Egypt, India, Spain, South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, and China). He is actively involved with the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE Training Committee, Vice-Chair ASGE International Committee, ASGE ambassador to Ecuador and ASGE Consultant Expert). He has served as faculty and director of several ASGE courses, including the First Year Fellow Endoscopy course, ASGE Stent course, and ASGE Hands-on courses, and at ASGE combined symposia with other countries at DDW.

Awards

He has received several awards including the prestigious ASGE Master of Endoscopy award, the B.J. Vakil Memorial Gold Medal, the Poona Oration Gold Medal, and the 2017 USA Healthcare Hero award for his work on esophageal regrowth. He has continuously been on the America’s Best Doctors list since 2002. He was the President of the International Dysphagia Research Society and the Milwaukee GI Society, and is currently the Co-President of the Midwest Endoscopy Society.

Dr Dua is currently actively involved with several philanthropic activities in countries such as Ethiopia, Sudan, Nigeria, India and Ecuador, training local doctors in clinical gastroenterology and endoscopy including endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) and endoscopic ultrasound (EUS).

 

More about the WEO ARA (Activities to Reach Africa) Project Ad Hoc Committee

The WEO ARA Project Ad-Hoc Committee supports and develops quality endoscopy in underserved areas in Africa, through teaching, mentoring, and research by a group of international experts. As mentioned above, the Committee is chaired by Dr Kulwinder Dua (USA) and by Professor Lars Aabakken (Norway) who also serves as a member on several WEO committees, was WEO Secretary General 2017–2020, and has supported and initiated many successful WEO educational programs and courses, especially in the African continent.

Lars Aabakken (Norway)

The Committee aims to establish a GI endoscopic skills transfer program in partnership with collaborating institutions in the African continent.

With growing rates of obesity, smoking, physical inactivity, and westernization of diet in the African continent, an increase in GI-related ailments warranting endoscopic intervention is anticipated.

There is a dearth of endoscopic services across the African continent, specifically in esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD), colonoscopy, ERCP, and EUS. As such, the main focus of this Committee may be the dissemination of endoscopy skills, not only in ERCP and EUS but also and mainly in basic EGD and colonoscopy with basic endotherapy, that meet quality standards.

For more information on WEO Committees, their Chairs, and WEO educational offers, see http://www.worldendo.org/about-us/committees/.