South American Surgeons Shadow Dr. Caesar Santiago at St. Joseph’s Hospital’s Colorectal Epicenter

February 13, 2015

Tampa, Fla., (February 13, 2015) - Five surgeons from South America observed Dr. Caesar Santiago perform robotic colorectal surgery at St. Joseph’s Hospital on February 11, 2015. The doctors, who reside in Brazil, Panama, Columbia and Chile will apply the skills they learned from Dr. Santiago and use them to build a robotic colorectal surgery program in their native countries.

The surgeons said there’s nothing like observing the robotic operation in person because it gives you the opportunity to really see the technique of the physician in ways you just can’t get from watching a video.

St. Joseph’s Hospital is one of 10 Colorectal Epicenters in America, which means it has a host surgeon who has completed 100 cases, offers teachable, reproducible and effective surgical techniques as well as a willingness to work toward being the most highly rated Epicenter in the nation.

Only a small percent of surgeons are trained in the latest colorectal robotic techniques, but Dr. Santiago said these advancements are important to him because they help his patients feel better, faster.

“In addition to sharing clinical expertise with other surgeons and institutions, serving as an Epicenter allows us to remain on the forefront of the latest technology,” said Dr. Santiago, the Epicenter’s medical director.  Select Epicenter surgeons are invited to test and offer assistance in the development of the newest technology and instrumentation in a lab setting, thus enabling them to have first access to the newly developed technology when released, prior to other institutions.  “This opportunity helps patients in our own community.”

Dr. Santiago offers physicians an opportunity to observe his surgeries once a week. He also conducted live surgery via teleconference to more than 300 physicians attending the Clinical Robotic Surgery Association’s 5th Worldwide Congress in Washington, DC.  He also travels the globe, speaking about colorectal robotic surgery.

With four robots and more than two dozen robotic surgeons on staff, St. Joseph’s Hospital’s Advanced Center for Robotic Surgery is one of the nation’s most comprehensive robotic programs.  


About BayCare Health System
BayCare Health System is a leading community-based health system in the Tampa Bay area. Comprised of a network of 12 not-for-profit hospitals, outpatient facilities and services such as imaging, lab, behavioral health and home health care, BayCare provides expert medical care throughout a patient’s lifetime. With more than 280 access points conveniently located throughout Tampa Bay, BayCare connects patients to a complete range of preventive, diagnostic and treatment services for any health care need. 

BayCare’s hospitals include: Mease Countryside, Mease Dunedin, Morton Plant, Morton Plant North Bay, St. Anthony’s, St. Joseph’s, St. Joseph’s Children’s, St. Joseph’s Women’s, St. Joseph’s Hospital-North, St. Joseph’s Hospital-South, South Florida Baptist and Winter Haven. For more information, visit BayCare on the Web at