Wed, Jul 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Delegation will provide medical care in Mongolia

CLEFT LIP, PALATE:The mission will include 13 doctors and experts, who hope to treat at least 25 people with craniofacial deformities next month

Staff Writer, with CNA

A medical charity mission led by cleft lip and palate repair specialists will leave for Mongolia on Aug. 21 to treat people with the condition.

The Taipei-based Noordhoff Craniofacial Foundation has been working to arrange the trip since it first visited Ulan Bator last year, when it helped 22 people with craniofacial deformities, foundation executive director Rebecca Wang (王金英) said.

The foundation, in cooperation with Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, has worked to improve the treatment of children with craniofacial deformities in many Asian countries, including Thailand, the Philippines and Cambodia.

Mongolia is the 10th country it has helped. For next month’s trip, a delegation of 13 doctors and experts will visit the landlocked country with the financial support of Rotary International, hoping to help at least 25 patients during the five-day stay.

In addition to sending missions to foreign countries, the foundation invites doctors from cooperating countries to Taiwan to attend three-to-six-month training workshops, Wang said.

“We want to provide the most practical and most sustainable assistance possible,” she said.

To date, five Mongolian doctors have joined the program, helping nearly 250 patients in the Asian country.

A full medical team specializing in cleft palates will be formed once speech pathologist Bulgan Baasan and surgeon Ayanga Gongorjav finish their training in Taiwan at the end of this month, Wang said.

The foundation said a full medical team should have surgeons, anesthetists, dentists and speech therapists.

Gongorjav, who is also the president of the Mongolian Cleft Lip and Palate Association, expressed his gratitude for Taiwan’s help.

Although Mongolia has also worked with Japan and South Korea, the cooperation with Taiwan has been “real and wide,” he said.

Besides giving free operations in rural areas, Taiwan also provided training workshops and medical equipment to help as many people as possible, he said.

“Taiwan has changed our concept of [medical] treatment,” he said.

The foundation expected that better equipment and a more complete homegrown medical team would benefit thousands of people with cleft lip and palate in Mongolia.

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