Professor William SC Chao founded the Hong Kong Society of Digestive Endoscopy with a group of Hong Kong gastroenterologists and surgeons in 1984.

Professor Chao graduated from the University of Chiba, Japan and did his residency training in England and worked as a consultant at the Prince of Wales Hospital and St. Ann’s General Hospital before returning to Hong Kong in 1979 to start his practice.

Professor Chao is the first Chinese to be elected as the President of the World Endoscopy Organization (WEO) since WEO/OMED was established in 1966. He was the President of the Asian-Pacific Society for Digestive Endoscopy (APSDE) from 2000 to 2014.

A veteran gastrointestinal specialist who exceled in endoscopy, Professor Chao was noted for his remarkable efforts and achievement in educating future endoscopists and promoting the use of the technology, particularly in China and other medically less privileged countries in Asia. For over four decades, he has been traveling extensively throughout Asia delivering lectures and organizing courses. To maximize results from limited resources, he established the “hands-on” training model, under which local doctors with suitable experience are selected to perform operational procedures under the supervision of expert endoscopists. In China alone, more than 50 hands-on teaching workshops have been organized in different cities since 1990, with many thousands of endoscopists benefiting from such basic orientation courses in diagnostic and/or therapeutic endoscopy.

In 2000, Professor Chao was elected President of the APSDE becoming the first Chinese to hold this prominent position. He continued his interests in developing therapeutic endoscopy in the region and helped established many recognized endoscopy teaching centers in China, Australia, Thailand and Vietnam. He was also an honorary professor of over 35 universities in China and Honorary Consultant of the Chinese Society of Digestive Endoscopy. In 2004, he was also awarded the Medal of Honour (MH) by the Hong Kong Government.