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Lebanon: 83 additional children operated on

83 additional children operated on in Lebanon for orthopaedic disorders

The Syrian crisis has forced more than 5 million people to seek refuge outside their country. In Lebanon, the refugee population represents 30% of the total population of the country, i.e. 1.5 million people, according to the Lebanese government. Faced with this large influx of newcomers, the country does not have the adequate resources to meet the needs of the population, particularly in terms of medical assistance. It is against that background that La Chaîne de l’Espoir has committed itself to assisting the refugee populations.

Funded by the Crisis and Support Centre (CDCS), of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs (MEAE) and in collaboration with the Union of Relief & Development Associations (URDA), La Chaîne de l’Espoir is implementing a programme to provide vulnerable children suffering from a congenital orthopaedic disorder with access to medical and surgical care. Between December 2016 and February 2018, 219 children were operated on as part of the first project.

213 consultations and 83 child surgeries in 4 months

Since May 2018, a second project has been initiated. It has enabled 213 consultations (preoperative) and 83 child surgeries to be carried out in four months. Most of the operations performed related to simple orthopaedic malformations such as clubfeet, congenital hip dislocation, polydactyly or syndactyly, which severely affect the day to day lives of the children.

In order to better target the most vulnerable children (Syrian or Palestinian refugees but also deprived Lebanese), URDA, the Lebanese partner of La Chaîne de l’Espoir, has set up a referral system with the health centres, the NGOs and international organisations. Patients are diagnosed and covered for orthopaedic surgery in the partner hospitals of the Sacré-Cœur of Beirut (Dr Hasan Najdi) and Shtoura (Dr Hamza Mazloum). Postoperative care, medical follow-up, rehabilitation and physiotherapy medical equipment are also provided for as part of the overall management. Partnerships with six physiotherapy centres have been established throughout the country, offering easier access to families.

This programme is financed by the Centre de Crise et de Soutien du Ministère Français des Affaires Etrangères (Crisis and Support Centre of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs).