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SMILE TRAIN PROJECT

“Smile Train”, a renowned non-profit organization of the USA, has identified Guru Nanak Hospital as its local partner for treating cleft patients of the city and its neighboring village at free of cost. After Tata Main Hospital in Jamshedpur, this is the second such unit the organization has chosen to help patients of the state. Anant Sinha, a plastic surgeon, has been identified to de the surgery in the hospital. The New York-based organization, operating in more than 40 countries, has 40 partner hospitals in India. As there is no centre in Bihar people from the neighboring state will also be immensely benefited, feels Sinha. According to the estimates, there is no such case on a population of 800 in the world while in Jharkhand, the figure is 500. Sinha said: “There are about 8,500 cleft cases in Jharkhand and only 20 percent of them can afford proper treatment, which costs anything between Rs 14,000 and Rs 20,000. The remaining 80 percent would either not get surgery done or land with people who offer them the treatment at a lower cost and with improper repair they are left with the deformity they had”. “For each cleft case ‘ Smile Train gives Rs 8,000, which includes cost of operations, case needs about three days’ stay in the hospital. The patient need not pay anything for the treatment, which include laboratory investigations, check-up by pediatricians, speech therapists and even orthodontists,” added Sinha, trained at Post Graduate Institute, Chandigarh.


 

The agreement, signed by ‘Smile Train’ with the GN hospital, is effective for one year and it has given a target of 300 surgeries in the period. A team of doctors from the ‘Smile Train’ will review the progress of the project after three months and only after being satisfied, money will be reimbursed to the hospital and the doctor. Sinha said strict quality standards are maintained while selecting a partner hospital. “A review is done frequently to maintain the quality of treatment,” he added. The global organization has sponsored 40,000 cleft operations in the past four years under the project. Any child from three to 18 months are covered under the project. Cases of higher age are also taken but their chances for improved speech remain blink, he added.



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