A surgical team from the International Volunteers in Urology of the United States of America will arrive in Kumasi on January 11, 2008 to join their counterparts from the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital to provide free surgery for children suffering from abnormal genital organs and other congenital malformations in their genitourinary tracts.
During the one-week programme, surgical operations would be performed to correct abnormalities in children who are born with both sex organs (hermaphrodites) and others with genital malformations, including penile hypospadia, hypertropy of the clitoris, bladder extrophy and epispadia.
About 40 children with such abnormalities would benefit from the programme and pay a token fee for the test that would be conducted. Those who have registered under the National Health Insurance will not pay anything.
A statement signed by the Public Relations Officer of the KATH, Mr Kwame Frimpong and made available to the Daily Graphic indicated that Dr Ken Aboah, who is in charge of the Urology Unit of the Surgery Directorate of the KATH would be in charge of the KATH team that would partner their USA counterparts for the free surgical operations.
The statement said that a screening exercise to select beneficiaries for the surgery would be held at the Radium Centre of the hospital's Oncology Directorate from Monday, January 7, 2008 to Saturday January 12, 2008 at 8:30 am each day.
According to the statement, it was important for parents whose children had malformed sex organs “to take advantage of the free reconstructive surgeries to bring them to the KATH for screening”.
Hospitals and midwifery homes that had also come across such babies should refer them for the screening”.
“The KATH's collaboration with the IVU is to make the otherwise expensive inter-sex and genital abnormality reconstructive surgeries accessible to needy children in the country,” the statement added.
It stressed that “normally, one genitourinary tract reconstructive surgery could cost over GH¢1,000 in the country, an amount most parents cannot afford but with our collaboration with such partners as the IVU, such surgeries could be provided for just a token fee”.
Story by George Ernest Asare,