A GROUP of medical professionals from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons has joined hands with local doctors to provide medical assistance to children this week.
Suva-based paediatric surgeon Dr Josese Turagava said the treatment was for children suffering abnormalities from birth.
"Some children are born with anorectal malformation and imperforate anus, which is mainly cases where they have problems with their toilet passage," Dr Turagava said.
"Our job is to create a functional toilet passage.
"Another problem children face is known as Hirschsprung's disease where the toilet passage is formed but the nerve that pushes the faeces out is not present.
"This has led to many deaths."
According to Dr Turagava, in the 20,000 live births each year, there were six or seven new cases of children having these complications.
Eighteen children from Suva, Labasa and parts of the Western Division have benefitted from this program.
Head of paediatric surgery of Auckland Children's Hospital Dr Philip Morreau is leading the team, which includes Dr David Linscott and Sister Chrissy Bond.
Dr Morreau said this was his first time to Fiji, via the program.
"The visit is to help local surgeons develop the skills and knowledge they need to take care of children," he said.
"It has been good to see some of the developments already taking place and we need to keep giving assistance so that these surgeons learn more."