PEOPLE [Welcome to AMC] Learning the Power of ‘Collaboration’ for Optimal Treatment 2024.04.23

Assistant Professor of Surgery, Surafel Mulatu Djote from Ethiopia


▲ (from left) Professor Jong Lyul Lee and Assistant Professor Surafel Mulatu Djote


Assistant Professor Surafel Mulatu Djote specializes in colorectal surgery at Yekatit 12 Hospital, Ethiopia. He has been a trainee at the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery at Asan Medical Center since July last year under the supervision of Professor Jong Lyul Lee. Assistant Professor Surafel Mulatu Djote shares his training experience at Asan Medical Center.


Why did you choose Asan Medical Center for training?

I encountered patients with various diseases, such as colon cancer, rectal cancer, and inflammatory bowel disease, while working at a hospital in Ethiopia, and I had always wanted to learn the latest surgical techniques and medical knowledge to provide the best treatment. I was particularly interested in minimally invasive and robotic surgery, so I wanted to go to a place with well-equipped training facilities and systems where I could learn effectively. Fortunately, a colleague who had just returned from training at Asan Medical Center recommended it to me. I applied without hesitation because it is a globally recognized hospital in the field of colorectal diseases.


What are your thoughts about the training so far?

When I first came to Asan Medical Center, I was surprised by the overwhelming size and the large number of patients. The Yekatit 12 Hospital in Ethiopia has a far smaller number of beds and a limited scope of treatment and surgery. Due to the variety of cases seen at Asan Medical Center, I have gained invaluable experiences in the surgical management of patients with colorectal and gastrointestinal(GI) conditions, for which I am immensely grateful. Alongside my training at the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery, I have had numerous opportunities to participate in various academic conferences and laparoscopic and robotic training courses. I am developing my skills by observing and learning various surgical approaches and techniques from Professor Jong Lyul Lee. I am confident that I will yield significant, positive outcomes upon my return home.


▲ At the Annual Congress of Korean Surgical Society 2023 with fellow medical colleagues. On the far left is Assistant Professor Surafel Mulatu Djote.


What impressed you the most while training at AMC?

Here, everything pivots around the patient. From the moment patients enter the hospital until they leave, they can comfortably receive medical services within a highly specialized system. Hospital staff work in their areas of expertise while also collaborating seamlessly with other teams and across different occupations. I was amazed to see how multiple disciplines work together to provide the best care for even the most complex diseases and surgeries. It is a pleasure to be a part of such an organized system and see patients' optimal treatmen course.


▲ At the AMC 2023 Alumni Night. On the far left is Assistant Professor Surafel Mulatu Djote.


How is your life in Korea?

I spend most of my time with professors, fellow doctors, and international medical professionals. I really like the positive atmosphere where we encourage and support one another in times of fatigue or exhaustion. When I have time for leisure, I often work out or explore various parts of Seoul to refresh myself.During my attendance at the scientific conference, I had the opportunity to explore Daejeon and visit various places in the city. Korea differs from Ethiopia in many aspects of culture, so the time spent here is always new and enjoyable. I am grateful for the opportunity to receive training at Asan Medical Center. After returning to Ethiopia upon completing the training, I intend to apply my newfound knowledge to elevate the standard of medical care for patients. Thank you once again!