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Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar medical mission
Mar 14 – 20 2015
Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar inaugural medical mission
Operation Smile conducted an inaugural medical mission in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar. A team of 54 dedicated medical volunteers from Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Myanmar, Thailand, the Philippines, the United States and Vietnam provided a total of 221 healthcare assessments and 161 surgical procedures at the Nay Pyi Taw 1,000 Bedded Hospital under the formal invitation of the Myanmar Ministry of Health’s International Health Division.
Emotions typically run high on the day the volunteer medical team provides healthcare assessments for children who are quite possibly receiving their first ever physical examination. Families are excited for what may come, knowing this exam will ultimately decide whether the child is a candidate for surgery. Since Operation Smile upholds the highest standards of care and surgical treatment, patients who have compromised health at the time of this medical assessment may have to wait until the next available medical mission to receive surgery. Operation Smile's medical volunteers notify each of the families individually if their child is not selected for surgery. Volunteers explain to families why surgery was not possible this time and encourage them to return to the next earliest medical mission.
During this inaugural medical mission in Nay Pyi Taw, patients and families who were not selected for surgery were understanding and left with more hope than they had when they arrived, kowing now that there is a solution to their child's cleft lip and cleft palate.
For those patients who did receive surgery, parents and families were beaming seeing their child's new smile for the first time. One father told Operation Smile that he had been praying for this moment since his child was born. The need for cleft care in Myanmar is evident, and with the help of donors around the world, Operation Smile will continue to provide hope of a better future and enrich the lives of those who seek surgical care.
Many thanks goes to the donors who helped make this medical mission possible. A coalition of Norwegian and Thai companies, including Benchachinda, Conexus, Kids Action for Kids and Telenor Myanmar provided substantial funds to sponsor the efforts of Operation Smile in Myanmar.
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