Wake Forest University School of Medicine Resident Selected for Advanced Surgery Training at IRCAD in France

08.23.2022 Medical Education and Research | Atrium Health News

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Aug. 23, 2022 – A general surgery resident at Wake Forest University School of Medicine has been selected to study pediatric minimally invasive surgery at IRCAD, a France-based, global research and training institute.

Dr. Jessica Rauh will spend one week in April 2023 at the state-of-the-art center, which teaches all aspects of endoscopic surgery, and is located on the campus of the University of Strasbourg, in France.

Only one fellow or resident is selected annually for this award. Rauh was selected based on her abstract presentation on laparoscopic common bile duct exploration for pediatric patients at the International Endosurgery Group’s annual conference earlier this summer.

“Dr. Rauh has all the qualities we look for in a surgery resident and we are delighted that she was selected for this prestigious opportunity,” said Dr. Julie Ann Freischlag CEO of Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist, dean of Wake Forest University School of Medicine, chief academic officer of Atrium Health and a vascular surgeon. “The techniques she will learn in France, combined with her training here at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, will position her as a leader in the field of pediatric minimally invasive surgery and will benefit families for years to come.” 

“We are so proud of Dr. Rauh’s accomplishments that have led to her receiving this incredible award,” said Dr. Wayne Meredith the Richard T. Myers professor and chair of surgery at Wake Forest Baptist. “Our residents are among some of the most promising medical professionals in the country and we are pleased to provide a comprehensive training experience to prepare them to become the surgical leaders of tomorrow.”

“I am so honored to receive this prestigious award and I know this opportunity will make me a better surgeon and enable me to better meet the needs of the patients I am privileged to serve throughout my career,” Rauh said.

With six existing sites around the world, IRCAD is expected to establish a North American headquarters in North Carolina, in collaboration with Atrium Health. It will be built adjacent to a second campus of Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Charlotte, with both located in the new “The Pearl” innovation district being built there. Atrium Health leaders have emphasized future physicians trained at Wake Forest University School of Medicine’s campuses in both Charlotte and Winston-Salem will have access to the most cutting-edge technology as part of their core training when the center opens, likely in 2025. 

IRCAD specializes in educating physicians from around the world in minimally invasive surgery techniques. It also features fundamental research laboratories as well as research and development units in computer science and robotics that design and develop tools for diagnosis, surgical planning and simulation, all aimed at improving and making surgical procedures safer.

“With the School of Medicine side-by-side with IRCAD, we will truly be creating a new ecosystem of research, innovation and entrepreneurship,” said Dr. Rasu Shrestha enterprise executive vice president and chief strategy and transformation officer for Atrium Health. “The Pearl will incorporate many of the best attributes of Winston-Salem’s Innovation Quarter in how it serves business, academic and societal needs. It will strengthen the IQ, combining it with the Pearl as a regional collective to bring ideas, passion and curiosity forward in a manner that will help address some of the world’s most pressing needs in medicine.”

Leaders from Wake Forest University and the University of Strasbourg signed a letter of intent that enables the two universities to explore opportunities to engage in education and research collaborations, along with Wake Forest University School of Medicine and Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist.

About Atrium Health
Atrium Health is a nationally recognized leader in shaping health outcomes through innovative research, education and compassionate patient care. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, Atrium Health is an integrated, nonprofit health system with more than 70,000 teammates serving patients at 40 hospitals and more than 1,400 care locations. It provides care under the Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist name in the Winston-Salem, North Carolina, region, as well as Atrium Health Navicent and Atrium Health Floyd in Georgia and Alabama. Atrium Health is renowned for its top-ranked pediatric, cancer and heart care, as well as organ transplants, burn treatments and specialized musculoskeletal programs. A recognized leader in experiential medical education and groundbreaking research, Wake Forest University School of Medicine is the academic core of the enterprise, including Wake Forest Innovations, which is advancing new medical technologies and biomedical discoveries. Atrium Health is also a leading-edge innovator in virtual care and mobile medicine, providing care close to home and in the home. Ranked nationally among U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals in eight pediatric specialties and for rehabilitation, Atrium Health has also received the American Hospital Association’s Quest for Quality Prize and its 2021 Carolyn Boone Lewis Equity of Care Award, as well as the 2020 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Health Equity Award for its efforts to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in care. With a commitment to every community it serves, Atrium Health seeks to improve health, elevate hope and advance healing – for all, providing more than $2 billion per year in free and uncompensated care and other community benefits.