By Jennifer Browning
Almost three weeks ago, plastic surgeons from University of Miami Department of Plastic Surgery came to Port-au-Prince as part of Project Medishare’s Plastic Surgery program. Eleven-months-old Yvens Olsen was one of their patients.
Today, Yvens, is already healing well from his cleft lip surgery.
Project Medishare nurse, Rosemerline Pierre-Louis, met Yvens and his mother at the clinic in Casse. Rosemerline informed her that there was a program that could help her son.
For Madame Olsen, she said she mostly worried about Yvens cleft lip, because the child looked different from his twin brother, Yvner.
“It was difficult because I have twin boys, and Yvens had this deformity on his lip, and Yvner looked normal,” she said. “I was sad for him, because if we could not get it fixed, then when they grew up people would see a difference between them.”
Project Medishare provides specialized plastic surgery to individuals living in Port-au-Prince as part of our specialty surgery program.
In addition to providing these surgeries (cleft lip & palates, burns, breast cancer reconstruction) local surgeons are trained on these specialized techniques enabling them to perform these procedures themselves.
Even though he was crying as he was waking up from the anesthesia, Yvens mother said he looked better after the surgery.
“I was so happy when I saw him after he came out of surgery,” she said. “I am happy that Rosemerlin found me and I am thankful to God that the doctors were able to fix Yvens lip.”
Madame Olsen now takes Yvens to the clinic in Casse so that Project Medishare doctors can follow-up on how the child’s lip is healing. The mother said she is so happy that there is a clinic in Casse. A few years ago, that wasn’t the case.
Local staff working with Project Medishare’s Community Health Program in Haiti’s Central Plateau assists in making sure the patients living in this rural area receive proper follow-up appointments after the surgery.
Before the clinic opened in Casse, people like Madame Olsen went to the clinic in Thomonde which not only included a journey, but cost more money for transportation.
“When I had to go to Thomonde to see the doctor, then I had to find money to rent a motorcycle or rent a horse to get there,” she said, “but now I can walk to the clinic and I don’t have to worry about having money for transportation.”