WHO WE ARE

The Surgery Ship

One ship. Thousands of people suffering life-threatening illness. A team of Australian medics facing life and death decisions.

A unique hospital ship offering lifesaving surgery sets sail for the poorest of the poor in Africa. They have just one year to do the impossible – to provide the care these people cannot get any other way. On board are volunteer doctors and nurses – now headed straight for the biggest medical and ethical challenges of their lives. Ahead lies unbelievable illnesses, many they have never seen outside of textbooks. A dramatic journey is underway as they deal with life and death cases and balance the fates of patients in their hands.

Come aboard The Surgery Ship each Thursday at 7.30pm AEDT on National Geographic from 7 October.

Watch the Trailer

Continue the Stories

S1:E1 Original Feature

One ship. Thousands of people suffering life-threatening illness. A team of Australian medics facing life and death decisions.

S2:E1 The Power of Yes and No

The first episode of The Surgery Ship series is a powerful story of life and death as the hospital ship arrives in Cotonou, Benin.

S2:E2 Skin Deep

The volunteer medics continue to select and treat extraordinary cases of medical need.

S2:E3 Sea Change

Volunteers encounter a young baby whose mother has been ostracised because of her child’s ‘curse’.

S2:E4 Gods and Monsters

This episode explores cultural and religious factors that accompany the patient stories.

S2:E5 Blood and Water

Medics travel to Guinea to find a previous patient and bring her back to the ship for critical surgery.

S2:E6 The Long Road Home

The screening team travels up country to remote areas of Benin to find patients who need help.

S2:E7 On The Frontline

The trials and triumphs of working in West Africa.

S2:E8 Take The Helm

The volunteer crew members help train Beninese medics.

About The Series

The Surgery Ship is a story about the intense ethical dilemmas faced by individual medics as they decide who they will help and who they will turn away, knowing that there is nowhere else for these people to go. Despite these complicated issues, The Surgery Ship is also a story about the every day heroism of both Africans and the volunteers and the human drive to rise above circumstances, to survive, and give the best of ourselves – even when there seems no end in sight.