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A global health love story


Dr. Dilan Ellegala's quest to learn the world's most difficult brain surgeries leaves him in tatters. To save his sanity, he takes six months off to live in a missionary hospital deep in the Tanzanian bush.

His mentors roll their eyes. Why risk such a promising career? But in Tanzania, Dilan suddenly confronts one of the world's most neglected public health problems - the shocking shortage of surgeons.

Every year, millions die because of this gap - more deaths than malaria, tuberculosis and AIDS combined.  And few people are doing anything about it. But with a surgeon's precision, Dilan embarks on a new quest, one that leads him to solutions that could save countless people across the world.

And this journey also may be his last chance at finding true love.


"This is a fine book about a devoted doctor attempting to help Tanzanians help themselves. A highly inspirational story ... "

- Kirkus Reviews

"Exceptionally well written ... this is a book that every student and practitioner of global surgery will find enjoyable and inspiring reading."


- Dr. Haile T. Debas, surgeon and founder of UC San Francisco Global Health Sciences.


"A lyrical and inspirational and altogether rewarding account ...Tony Bartelme's superb reporting and writing takes you into the OR and the lives of all those involved."

-Tom Brokaw, author, The Greatest Generation and A Lucky Life Interrupted

Tony Bartelme deftly weaves history and current affairs into a powerful story of redemption and hope. This book is a page-turner that will leave you transfixed and transformed.

- James M. Scott, 2016 Pulitizer Prize finalist for Target Tokyo: Jimmy Doolittle and the Raid That Avenged Pearl Harbor

“... turns the modern philanthropic paradigm on its head."

-Danielle Ofri, author of What Doctors Feel

Book Source Notes

Click below for a comprehensive compilation of notes, photos and other sources used in the documentation of A Surgeon in the Village (Beacon Press) and Send Forth the Healing Sun (HarperCollins/Canada).

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