PARENTS and guardians of young children suffering from birth defects of the hips, arms and legs are being encouraged to visit a team of medical professionals from the Shriners Hospital for Children in Hawaii.
The team will begin their nationwide clinics in Lautoka Hospital today.
Hospital representative to Fiji Rob Leacock said the team consisted of professional orthopedic surgeons who specialised in reconstructive surgeries.
"A team of doctors will go to three hospitals and hold a free clinic so that parents of children with orthopedic conditions can bring their children in to be diagnosed and evaluated," he said.
"The clinics will be in Lautoka on March 11, 12 and 13 and in Labasa on March 17.
"The doctors will be available at the CWMH on March 18, 19 and 20."
He said the doctors would then go back to Hawaii to finalise arrangements for those who would need to travel to Honolulu for surgery.
"We urge people to bring their children to one of the free clinics in Lautoka, Labasa or Suva.
"Nothing can happen until the child is seen by the doctors at the Shriners Clinics.
"If your child was seen at the clinic last year and the doctors told you that your child would be a candidate for surgery in Hawaii or if your child has had surgery in Hawaii, please bring your child back to the clinics so that they can been seen again by the doctors."
A total of 25 children went for reconstructive surgery last year while 17 are waiting to travel to Honolulu.
Mr Leacock added about 70 to 80 children had gone to the hospital so far.
Children under the age of 18 suffering from birth defects of the hips, arms and legs, club feet, deformities of the spine, complications from bone infections, cerebral palsy and some burn scars can be examined by the visiting professionals.