December 4, 2022

Do you have children with clubfoot?

The Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health and Welfare is looking for would-be beneficiaries of the MiracleFeet program for addressing clubfoot, a congenital lower-limb deformity that is correctable if treated on time.

Mayor Benjamin Magalong encouraged parents with children having this condition to avail of the program which offers free consultations, corrective surgery and clubfoot brace at the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center.

“Our children need not bear with the deformity forever if they are attended to by professionals in time.  We have this program and it’s for free, please avail of it,” he said.

The mayor was updated on the program by PNGOC Executive Director Chi Laigo Vallido, national coordinator Jhen Oblema, and local coordinator Mau Victa in a meeting where the mayor, Persons with Disability Affairs Office (PDAO) head Samuel Aquino, and the PNGOC heads also discussed avenues of promoting the program and plans to sustain it.

“Every year, more than 3,500 babies are born with clubfoot in the country. However, a mere 15 percent get treated due to lack of information and fear of medical costs. But 95 percent of cases can be corrected if treated on time through a series of clinical processes,” Vallido said.

She said the program provides free support to 30 partner clinics and hospitals all over the country to treat clubfoot including Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center and Benguet General Hospital.

The program started in 2019 giving rise to the establishment of a clubfoot clinic under the Orthopedic Department of the BGHMC.

Beneficiaries are assessed, if warranted, subjected to corrective surgeries, and provided clubfoot brace or an orthotic for maintenance and post-intervention consults good for three to five years depending on the pace of the patient’s restoration.

Aquino said persons with clubfoot are considered PWDs and entitled to PWD privileges as long as the deformity is present.

“We are promoting the program because clubfoot can be corrected if treated on time and they don’t have to be PWDs for the rest of their lives. The city, however commits to continuously do its best to improve the quality of life for those with permanent deformities and disabilities,” he said. – Aileen P. Refuerzo