By Staff Reporter
First Lady Madame Monica Chakwera has commended Operation Smile for it’s continued support in providing free surgeries to patients born with cleft lip and cleft palate in Malawi.
Speaking today at Bingu International Convention Center (BICC) in Lilongwe during the 2022 Women in Medicine – Leadership and Education event, Madame Chakwera said children born with cleft lip and cleft palate are at higher risk of lower educational attainment which can have a long-lasting adverse impact on vocational, social, mental and physical health outcomes.
“Operation Smile is doing amazing work by giving hope and restoring confidence to the people of Malawi. This is a major problem that disrupts a child’s life I am encouraging the girl child to consider pursuing such courses in the future to help beef up the number of surgeons in the country, “ she said.
Making a presentation on the role of education and training with focus on women in global health, Chief Executive Officer of College of Surgeons, East, Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA), Dr. Stella Itunga made a call on action to promote and facilitate women to take up leadership roles in the health sector.
According to Smile Operations International Country Manager, Desiree Mhango, since 2012, the organization has provided services to 2050 patients in Malawi and 425 are on the waiting list.