After one week of over 50 plastic and orthopaedic surgeries and general paediatric services to hundreds of children, hope has been restored to many parents and relatives of children who underwent corrective surgical procedures, which in some cases would have only been available overseas.
This observation was made by CEO of the May Pen Hospital, Nadia Nunes who noted that: “I have seen the changes in the patients and the restoration of hope which is evident in the faces and expressions of parents and relatives. It has been heartwarming as many of the beneficiaries can now live normal or near normal lives.”
US-based medical mission ISMS Operation Kids from New Jersey arrived in the island on February 6 to provide voluntary paediatric services to children up to age 20. The 21 member mission conducted corrective surgeries for conditions including cleft lip and cleft palate, burn scars, contracture deformity, club foot and cerebral palsy. The team also conducted plastic and orthopaedic surgeries and distributed free medication.
For parent Calvin Edwards, whose son suffered a disability with his ankle which prevented him from walking properly, the initiative has been life changing.
“Based on my observation of his ankle, it seems the surgery was successful. I was told locally that there was nothing that could be done and I had to seek overseas assistance. There are no words to describe how I feel. I am grateful and I feel good. I would love for the team to come back and assist other persons” explained Mr. Edwards.
Mrs. Nunes added that there are children who will need additional support which the Mission has committed to providing.
President of ISMS Operation Kids, Colleen Hekemian stated that the synergies with her team and the support team from the May Pen Hospital has been incredible. She added that her team would love to make another visit to Jamaica and that she would recommend other missions to visit the country.