In the late 1970's the South African Orthopaedic Association (SAOA) saw a need to recognise excellence amongst Orthopaedic registrars studying at local South African Medical Universities. Smith & Nephew was approached to sponsor a fellowship which was formalised in 1981. Ever since, our country's top registrars, selected annually by the SAOA, have travelled around the country visiting other teaching institutions where they broadened their skills and knowledge.
The Smith & Nephew Orthopaedic Travelling Fellowship has grown from strength to strength and over 80 surgeons have now been inducted into this select fellowship.
Undoubtedly this program has met all original expectations the SAOA tabled, and the prestige and quality of recipients has grown exponentially, with the fellowship producing many surgeons who have been extremely active in academic circles and profiled in private practice all over the world.
Fellows have also made substantial contributions at SAOA Exco level. Indeed past presidents of the South African Orthopaedic Association who were Travelling Fellows include Prof Mthunzi Ngcelwane (Travelling Fellow 1987); Prof Theo le Roux (Travelling Fellow 1993); and Dr Jan de Vos (Travelling Fellow 1991).