He studied medicine between 1988 and 1993 at King's College Hospital School of Medicine. At university he was elected President of the Medical and Dental Society from 1989 to 1990 and helped introduce medical ethics into the curriculum. He was awarded the Jelf medal in 1990 for outstanding academic and social achievement at King's College London. He was also won the WG Oakley prize in Diabetes in 1992 for an original dissertation entitled "Diabetic Neuroarthropathy: the Pathogenesis of the Charcot joint".
He played football for the 1st XI between 1988–1993 and the United Hospitals' representative team 1990–1992. He captained the Cricket 1st XI 1991–1993.
Shafi completed his basic and higher surgical training in North East London in general surgery.
During his surgical training he undertook a period of research at The Royal London Hospital and Queen Mary University of London and obtained a PhD in 2010 with a thesis entitled "The role of microarray profiling in predicting outcome in patients with colorectal cancer".
He obtained his FRCS(Eng), FRCS(Ed) and FRCSI (Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, Edinburgh and Ireland) in 2007–2008. He completed his intercollegiate final FRCS(Gen.Surg) in 2006.
He also obtained a Certificate in Medical Informatics from the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh in 2005.
He has pioneered single incision laparoscopic colorectal surgery (virtual scarless surgery) and also works with liver surgeons to perform simultaneous laparoscopic liver and bowel resections for cancer. His other clinical interest is advanced stage 3/4 endometriosis, performing laparoscopic surgery with gynaecologists. This has led to the development and recognition of a national centre for endometriosis. In addition, he has specialist experience in complex abdominal wall hernias and reconstruction.
From 2010 to 2015 he was the lead clinician and multi-disciplinary team lead for colorectal cancer at Barts Health NHS Trust. He is also a CQC specialist advisor in general surgery.
He undertakes private work at the London Independent Hospital and the Spire Roding Hospital.
Shafi is the Associate Dean for Barts and the London undergraduate medical students at the Royal London Hospital and is the module lead for surgery in year 3 and year 5. He was programme director for core surgical trainees for North East London 2012–2013 and Tutor in Surgery for the Royal London Hospital 2011–2013.
Shafi is the module lead for an innovative new course at Barts and The London Medical School which aims to teach the 3rd year medical students about future medicine and how to generate ideas to improve clinical care. The students are taught by digital health innovators and those involved in Medtech from the UK and US. BMJ digital and QMUL are supporting a hackathon and taking ideas to market by crowdsource funding.
Shafi was elected onto the council of the Royal College of Surgeons of England in 2013. He has numerous roles and leads the International Surgical Training Programme. He was part of the Cancer 2020 5 Year Forward View Task force 2015. He is a member of the court of examiners and is an international convenor of the MRCS for Bangladesh.
Technology, innovation and global surgical education
Shafi has been working on new technologies enhancing surgical education globally.
His company Virtual Medics has developed the use of wearable technology in education and clinical practice. This has allowed the development of a web-placed platform to stream live and interactive teaching. They have recently released a global surgical curriculum.
In May 2014, using Google Glass, he performed and streamed a live interactive operation to 14000 students and trainees across 132 countries and 1100 cities.
On 9 December 2016, he performed the world's first live operation using Snapchat Spectacles where he trained 200 medical students and surgical trainees, which was covered by Time magazine,BBC, and Cosmopolitan. The operation has been viewed over 100 000 times
He is a non-executive director of Medic creations.
Shafi is an international keynote speaker and is a faculty at Exponential Medicine and Singularity University. He as spoken at many international conferences including TEDx Barts health, Wired Health, Exponential Medicine, Royal Society of Medicine Innovation Summit, Digital Health Summer Summit, MedTech Forum Europe, CopenX, Innovation showcase Dublin, Dubai Health Forum, and Tryst Conference, India Institute of Technology, Delhi.
He is Vice-President of Proshanti a local charity community project to set up a health programme in Bangladesh and teaches and trains surgeons in Dhaka, Bangladesh where he supports Rahetid, a postgraduate surgical training centre.
Jelf Medal 1990. Awarded by the Principal of the College for the best academic and social achievement in the medical faculty of King's College School of Medicine and Dentistry.
W.G.Oakley Prize in Diabetes 1992. Awarded for an original dissertation entitled "Diabetic Neuroarthropathy: the Pathogenesis of the Charcot joint"
British Journal of Surgery Prize 2004. Awarded at the Association of Coloproctology, Edinburgh 2004 for best oral presentation "Prediction of Lymph Node Status in Colorectal Cancer by Microarray Profiling"
Silver Scalpel Prize 2015. Awarded by the Association of Surgeons of Training for Best Surgical Trainer in UK
Islamic Society of Britain/British Telecom Innovation Business and Skills Award winner 2016
^Ahmed, S.; Banerjea, A.; Hands, R. E.; Bustin, S.; Dorudi, S. (1 November 2005). "Microarray profiling of colorectal cancer in Bangladeshi patients". Colorectal Dis. 7 (6): 571–575. doi:10.1111/j.1463-1318.2005.00818.x. PMID16232237 – via PubMed.