From 2006 to 2012, I had the opportunity to volunteer and use my experience and skills for the association “Doctors for Disabled” by participating and co-chairing a clubfoot project in Mali in Africa.
In recent years, I have been part of training missions for deformity correction in Uganda and Ethiopia with CBM and the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA).
The country of Mali in West Africa is considered one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. The health system outside the capital is scarce. If left untreated, congenital clubfoot causes severe physical, social, psychological, and financial consequences for those affected.
In addition to personal suffering, the markedly higher number of cases than in Europe is a major socioeconomic and health problem for the country. The clubfoot project focused on treating this malformation using the Ponseti method.
This method is perfectly suited for a developing country because it can mostly be carried out by non-medical personnel under the guidance of few doctors. No elaborate techniques, such as radiography, are needed. An operation on the Achilles tendon can be safely performed with the patient under local anesthesia in a clean room. The necessary braces for follow-up treatment can be produced cost-effectively with existing resources on site.
Centre National d‘Appareillage Orthopédique du Mali (CNAOM)
In Bamako, the capital of Mali, local staff have been trained at the local orthopedic center, CNAOM, to the extent that they can perform clubfoot treatments on their own. Regular visits by Doctors for Disabled ensure quality control. Between visits, the treatment has been excellent without our intervention, and the primary goal of our project has thus been achieved.
Please help us!
The Project still needs financial support, especially for the purchase of medical equipment and materials such as plaster, bandages, scalpels, etc.
Donations to Doctors for Disabled are tax deductible. Thank you for your support!