Thirteen people with cleft deformities are to benefit from corrective surgery under Operation Smile on board the Italian Aircraft Carrier, Cavour, which docked at Tema on Wednesday.
They were selected on Tuesday during a screening at the Tema General Hospital.
The screening was done by the Operation Smile Team with the support of the Tema Lions Club, in partnership with the Italian Navy’s Cavour Aircraft Carrier crew.
The patients were taken through screening and language pathology, laboratory tests, and anesthesia pediatrics, among others, to establish their eligibility for the three-day activity.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, Amerigo Giudice, an Italian plastic surgeon and member of the team, said there would be a
three-day surgery and a two-day post-operation assessment.
Mr. Giudice said the team was working hand in hand with Ghanaian doctors and authorities.
He said children below six months and above qualify to undergo the lip cleft operation, while children who are 12 months old would also undergo the palate operation.
According to him, children with cleft deformities face a lot challenges, such poor feeding, unable to talk properly and humiliation, because they do not feel accepted by society.
He said the operation would help change the lives of the children, as they would freely engage their peers when the deformities are corrected.
Speaking at a Press Conference on the Italian Aircraft Carrier, Madam Sherry Ayittey, Minister of Health, said it was a privilege to have the Italian medical team in Ghana, since they would be helping the under-privileged.