World Digestive Health Day

The World GAstroenterology Organisation celebrates World Digestive Health Day (WDHD) annually on May 29. The purpose of World Digestive Health Day is to promote general public awareness of how to maintain digestive health, prevent digestive disorders and educate people concerning the therapy of digestive disorders

Each year, WDHD focuses upon a particular digestive disorder and Past. WDHD themes have included: Health and Nutrition, Helicobacter pylori infection, Viral Hepatitis, Optimal Nutrition in Health and Disease, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Enteric Infections: Prevention and Management – Clean Food, Clean Water, Clean Environment, Common GI Symptoms in the Community: Impact and Interpretation, LIVER CANCER, Gut Microbes, Heartburn and Diet and gut Health.

The World Gastroenterology Organisation (WGO) is an international federation of over 100 national GI societies and 4 regional associations of gastroenterology representing over 50,000 individual members. It was established in 2007 to raise financial support to develop and sustain the World Gastroenterology Organisation’s global training and education programs. These programs focus primarily on developing, low-resource countries and aim to meet the increasing demand for digestive disorder prevention and treatment worldwide..” The WGO is focused on “the improvement of standards in gastroenterology training and education on a global scale.”

The association was founded in 1935 and incorporated in 1958. The WGO was originally known as the Organisation Mondiale de Gastroenterologie (OMGE) and was renamed the World Gastroenterology Organisation in 2006. Its activities include educational initiatives such as Training Centers, Train the Trainers Workshops, public awareness campaigns such as World Digestive Health Day[3] and Global Guidelines which cascade, providing viable solutions which are adaptable to varying resource levels around the world, as well as a quadrennial World Congress of Gastroenterology. The WGO Foundation was incorporated in 2007 and is dedicated to raising funds to support the ongoing WGO education initiatives and activities.In 2008, the WGO, together with Danone, launched a global campaign to improve digestive health, titled “Optimum Health and Nutrition.” The campaign is part of a three-year partnership between WGO and Danone to “help raise awareness of digestive disorders and the importance of maintaining good digestive health.”.

Georges Brohée (1887–1957), was a Belgian surgeon who promoted modern gastroenterology, and he is largely responsible for the origin of the WGO, in particular by founding the Belgian Society of Gastroenterology in 1928 and by organizing the first International Congress of Gastroenterology in Brussels in 1935. At first Developed nations were the initial focus of the organization, however today the WGO embraces a global approach with a special emphasis on developing regions. In May 1958 the first World Congress of Gastroenterology was held in Washington DC, where Georges Brohée’s continuing efforts culminated in the constitution of the “Organisation Mondiale de Gastro-entérologie” (OMGE) on May 29, 1958. Dr H.L. Bockus was the organisation’s first President. His vision was to enhance standards of education and training in gastroenterology.

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