Chris Hill arrived back in Northern Ireland on Sunday night after completing his 4th consecutive trip to The Cleft Hospital in Gujrat Pakistan. Once again, he took part in the running of a free surgical camp for children and babies with cleft lip and palate and other facial deformities. In the absence of a welfare system, families travel from hundreds of miles away so their children can be seen by the country’s leading hospital in cleft lip and palate repair.
Accompanying the Overseas Plastic Surgery Appeal (OPSA), Chris and the team undertook 103 life-changing operations. Chris himself operated tirelessly over the 9 days to address as many patients as possible, all the while passing on his knowledge and skills to local surgeons and medical students in a bid to establish and improve better practice.
Please note the following pictures (of only a few that would willingly keep still for a picture!) were taken immediately before and after surgery, therefore suturing and swelling are still evident. Many of the cases seen last week were so severe that a ‘work in progress’ was as much as could be done until the family could revisit a surgeon at the next available free camp. For some, their babies arrived at the camp too malnourished to withstand an anaesthetic and therefore will hopefully return again next year.
The UK team that travel out there each year do so entirely for free, using their annual leave from the NHS and donated resources to do so. Their reward comes from making such an enormous difference to the lives of patients and their families. Please support OPSA and The Cleft Hospital by donating to www.opsacharity.com/donate