CHILDREN with birth defects, living in the Western Division are being urged to visit the Lautoka Hospital on March 5-7 for evaluation from a visiting team of orthopaedic surgeons from Shriners Hospital in Hawaii.
A statement released by Shriners Hospital for Children said the team would be making diagnosis and evaluations on all children with orthopaedic problems up to the age of 18, regardless of their family's ability to pay.
"In addition, airfare to Honolulu for treatment for a child and one parent or guardian is provided by the Aloha Temple Shriners, based on a family's financial need. "We provide care for children with different conditions, including birth defects of hips, arms and legs, deformities of the spine, serious complications from bone infections of the arms or legs, sports injuries, cerebral palsy, some burn scars, complicated fracture problems and more," Shriners Hospital said.
The Honolulu-based children's hospital has so far helped 38 children and is looking at continuing with the program indefinitely.
Spokesman for the visiting Shriners Hospital team Rob Leacock said Fiji's Health Ministry and Vodafone had begun assisting by paying airfares over the past few years.