The idea for an Association for Surgeons with an interest in upper gastrointestinal disease grow from within the Association of Surgeons in 1995. The Specialties Board and the Surgical Gastroenterology Group recognised the desire of many surgeons to have appropriate representation in Gastrointestinal Surgery.
A steering group composed of senior representatives of the respective academic societies interested in upper gastrointestinal disease met in 1995 and 1996 to consider the foundation of a new Association. It was recognised that the Association would encompass the science and practice of surgery of the oesophagus, stomach, duodenum, small bowel, liver, pancreas, gallbladder, biliary tree and spleen. Since then it has also grown to include the British Obesity and Metabolic Surgery Society (BOMSS, www.bomss.org.uk), The Great Britain and Ireland Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association (GBIHPBA, www.gbihpba.org.uk) and the Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons (Trainees) (AUGISt, www.augist.org).
Within the sub-specialty are two sub-divisions; disorders of the oesophagus and stomach (oesophago gastric surgery) and disorders of the liver, pancreas and biliary tract (HPB surgery) which can be further sub-divided to allow specialisation in the treatment of liver disorders to include hepatic resection and transplantation.
The inaugural meeting of the Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland was held in Glasgow in 1996 under the Presidency of Professor Robin Williamson. Since then AUGIS has grown and flourished. It continues to promote its principles and objectives of improving the delivery, the results and outcome of conditions of the oesophagus, stomach, duodenum, pancreas, liver and biliary tract requiring surgical treatment. Membership of the Association is open to all surgeons, both trained and in training, who have a major sub-specialty interest in upper gastrointestinal surgery.
Affiliate membership is also open to those who wish to promote the objectives of the Association in advancing the science and practice of upper gastrointestinal surgery and the promotion of research in this field.
The Association meets under the umbrella of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland at its spring meeting and at an annual autumn meeting. This meeting provides an educational forum designed to promote standards in training in upper gastrointestinal surgery and endoscopy.
National and international speakers are invited and the Association is generously supported by a lectureship through the British Journal of Surgery Society. The presentation of high quality scientific and clinical papers is a key feature of the autumn meeting.