Priyanka Naidu, MBChB, MSc, is a medical doctor and aspiring pediatric reconstructive surgeon from Cape Town, South Africa. She studied at the University of Cape Town and went on to train at one of the world’s largest hospitals, Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto. In 2019, she was awarded the National Research Foundation Scholarship and has pursued a Masters in Global Surgery with a focus on national surgical planning and addressing barriers to safe surgery. She has presented her work at international conferences globally, including the Bethune Round Table and the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress. Priyanka is interested in developing innovative solutions to scale-up surgical workforce capacity in low- and middle-income countries. Since joining Operation Smile as a Global Surgery Fellow in February 2020, she has been involved in education and training, health systems strengthening initiatives, and geospatial mapping of cleft care providers in Operation Smile’s programmatic countries. She was previously named as one of South Africa’s top 200 Young South Africans for her work in the healthcare sector.
Zachary Collier, MD, is a plastic and reconstructive surgery resident at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and a second year global surgery fellow with Operation Smile. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and his medical degree from the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. He first became involved with global surgery during his time at the University of Virginia where he worked with a plastic surgeon and local NGO in the Philippines to provide burn and cleft care to both children and adults. While at the University of Chicago, his research focused on identifying and managing pediatric abuse and neglect burns; improving burn triage and diagnosis; reducing burn wound infections; and developing new methods of tissue engineering using fat-derived stem cells. As a resident, he expanded his research to include more globally-oriented inquiries. Specifically, his research now focuses on understanding regions and populations most impacted by burn injury, identifying the barriers to accessing and receiving burn care, developing resource-conscious solutions in burn treatment, and facilitating community-based prevention programs.