Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the non-profit medical service organisation, Operation Smile South Africa (OSSA), this April assisted Worcester Hospital, with protective gear such as surgical and N95 masks, as well as the loan of a ventilator.
“It is our privilege to be able to support Worcester Hospital in such a time of need,” adds Lauren Bright, Country Manager for OSSA. “We hope the contribution will ease any burden they may feel, as well as assist in ensuring the health and safety of their healthcare workers.”
The assistance indeed made a difference: “We are grateful for Operation Smile South Africa’s support and contribution which will go a long way in ensuring the protection of our healthcare workers,” adds Elbie Vosloo, Chief Executive Officer at Worcester Hospital.
Joining OSSA in supporting the hospital is the Pick n Pay situated in the Mountain Mill Shopping Centre, Worcester, which has – as part of their Feed the Nation campaign – committed to a fortnightly donation of snacks and drinks for healthcare workers on duty at the Worcester Hospital over the COVID-19 period:
“Our healthcare workers are working tirelessly for the benefit of our country. This is a small token to say thank you to the medical staff of Worcester Hospital for everything they are doing in their community,” says Suzanne Ackerman-Berman, transformational director at Pick n Pay.
Stuart Myers, Operation Smile Senior Vice President of Programs based in Virginia, USA, stated this week: “Although our medical programmes are temporarily paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Operation Smile remains committed to the health and well-being of our patients, their families and their communities around the world.
We hope this donation of much-needed medical supplies and equipment to Worcester Hospital will demonstrate our belief that strengthening health care systems in the countries where we work is more crucial now than ever. We applaud all who are supporting this effort in South Africa.”
OSSA is part of a global non-profit medical service organisation that provides free cleft lip and cleft palate reconstructive surgery to vulnerable children and adults. Cleft lift and cleft palate are conditions where a gap in the mouth doesn’t close during the early stages of pregnancy and is the third most common birth defect worldwide.
Every three minutes a child is born with a clef. Those with the condition suffer difficulty with feeding, which can lead to malnutrition or even starvation. Recurring ear infections can also occur, resulting in hearing loss. Other issues include dental development, language impairment, bullying, and social isolation.
The cost of one surgery is R5,500 and can take as little as 45 minutes to perform a corrective procedure. To make a donation to Operation Smile South Africa or sign up as a volunteer, please visit southafrica.operationsmile.org
About Operation Smile South Africa
Those requiring assistance with receiving reconstructive surgery to correct a cleft lip and/or palate can visit the Operation Smile South Africa website, connect on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, call toll free on 0800 0 76453, or WhatsApp on 060 855 7971.
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