Operation Smile medical mission goes to Malawi

Operation Smile South Africa (OSSA) and its team of medical and non-medical volunteers, in partnership with the Malawian Ministry of Health, Asum, the Rotary Club of Lilongwe and UNICEF will, from August 2nd – 11th, provide free surgery to children and adults born with cleft lips and/or cleft palates.

What’s a cleft?

A cleft lip is a hole in the lip that has caused the lip to not form fully, and a cleft palate is a hole in the roof of the mouth. 1:10 children with clefts do not survive until their first birthday as they struggle to feed.

To be assessed for surgery, any person with a cleft lip and/or cleft palate must come to Kamuzu Central Hospital on Saturday, August 3.

A child with cleft lip

A child with cleft lip

In addition, Operation Smile would also like to invite those who have received previous cleft surgery for a Post-Operative examination to determine the next step of their medical treatment plan. Free transportation from various pick up points to Lilongwe will be provided on Friday, August 2.

“Operation Smile South Africa’s medical mission in Malawi is part of our ongoing commitment to the children and adults of Malawi currently living with facial disfigurements. Our other commitment includes training in order to develop the local skills and abilities of Malawians to help their own children,” said Sarah Driver-Jowitt, Regional Director for Operation Smile Southern Africa.

If chosen for surgery, patients will have to remain for up to 10 days, and should bring along clothing for the duration of the medical mission. Only one family member or guardian can accompany the patient.

To register or find out about the free transportation, contact Operation Smile at 0996340683 or email Elise Farley Programme Coordinator, Southern Africa, at [email protected]

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