Prosthetics Outreach Foundation Programs
Worldwide, one in a thousand children is born with clubfoot. Clubfoot is a debilitating limb deformity that robs children of their ability to walk normally as one or both feet gradually turn inward and sometimes even backward, resulting in severe lifelong disability, discrimination and often deep poverty. If clubfoot is identified early in a child’s life, the disability can be corrected effectively.
- Raise awareness of clubfoot deformity & establish referral pathways
- Early intervention with the Ponseti Method
- Facilitate brace production
- Enhance skills of local surgeons
- Sensitize the community about clubfoot as a treatable condition
POF currently supports clubfoot treatment programs in Vietnam, Haiti and Sierra Leone.
Amputees lose their limbs to war, accidents and untreated infections. In developing countries, many amputees receive little to no care for their injuries and lost limbs. Without a continuum of care, amputees can experience a decrease in quality of life, limited mobility and potential discrimination. POF works with partners in developing countries to enhance physical rehabilitation programs and establish prosthetic treatment centers that are locally staffed and operated. We:
- Train local clinical personnel to fabricate custom-made artificial limbs
- Support mobile outreach to amputees living in remote areas who are unable to travel
- Offer technical advice on the local fabrication of prosthetic components (prosthetic feet, kneejoints, etc.) to ensure a reliable local component supply
We train surgeons in developing countries to surgically correct severe limb deformities (neglected clubfoot) and perform revision surgeries for amputees. Each year, teams of surgeons travel to Vietnam and other countries to volunteer their services.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
Since the devastating earthquake in Haiti in January 2010, Prosthetics Outreach Foundation (POF) has worked to establish an effective public prosthetics services delivery infrastructure in northern Haiti. In partnership with the government-run Justinian University Hospital (JUH) in Cap-Haïtien, and the Haiti Project of the University of Miami, Florida, a workshop has been renovated and equipped with modern prosthetic fabrication equipment. Key local staff have been hired and are now being trained under the supervision of an experienced prosthetist, supported by POF funds. Two Haitians are enrolled in a two and one-half year prosthetic technologist training program, and receiving on-the-job skills training at the prosthetics workshop – all funded by POF.
In January 2012, the first amputees were cast and fit with custom-made artificial limbs! They are now learning to walk on their new prosthetic limbs and receiving rehabilitation care at the Physical Rehabilitation Center at JUH. Through the provision of services at the prosthetics workshop, mobile amputees can seek employment and provide for their families.
To increase the impact of the program through training and education, and to ensure that services are delivered sustainably with locally made prosthetics, additional investments are needed.
Please support our efforts to provide viable prosthetic services in northern Haiti, which includes ongoing education, training, and local staffing of the prosthetics workshop at the JUH Physical Rehabilitation Center!