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Feb 16, 2023

Children with Orthopedic Conditions Get Tertiary-level Care from Visiting Medical Team

Through the efforts of the World Pediatric Project, Belize office, children and babies who are struggling with orthopedic issues are this week receiving the medical attention they need. The Orthopedic Surgery Mission has treated nearly seventy children, and many require surgery that would not be possible without their expertise. News Five’s Marion Ali spoke with the local organizer of the World Pediatric Project and the visiting specialist.


Marion Ali, Reporting

Children born with mobility issues because of conditions such as spina bifida, club feet, or cerebral palsy and who would not ordinarily have access to advanced-level care are getting that attention from Sunday up until tomorrow. It comes through a joint effort by the World Pediatric Project, the Belize branch, and Colorado Children’s Hospital. Candice Tillett is the Program Manager for the World Pediatric Project in Belize.


Candice Tillett, Program Manager, World Pediatric Project, Belize

Candice Tillett

“We work along with our local physicians. They review the case; they provide us with a medical summary, which is very important. A lot of times, we have parents come to us and say, “My child needs to get flown out; my child needs certain services.” Some of the services are available here, and when that is available here, we work along with the local doctors to get the services here.”


The children are being attended to by a team headed by Dr. Aaron Boyles from the Colorado Children’s Hospital in the United States


Dr. Aaron Boyles

Dr. Aaron Boyles, Physician, Colorado Children’s Hospital, U.S.A.

“We’re able to provide a surgery that improves their quality of life with walking and mobility. The surgeries are often not terribly complex, but choosing on which children to do those surgeries for, which children can benefit the most, and which children would maybe not have as much benefit from surgery but have better benefit from local resources with physical therapy and other things.”


The visiting teams always bring equipment and supplies to complement existing equipment.

Dr. Aaron Boyles

“We bring a lot of supplies and equipment with us, thanks to the World Pediatric Project and its donors. We also utilize local resources and the hospital has been very accommodating and helpful with our ability to do the surgeries that we do when we have things that we aren’t able to bring with us.”


But there are times when the help needed is not available in Belize. That is when arrangements are made to have those children sent to the United States, such as is the case currently with one particular case.

Candice Tillett

“We have a child with osteogenesis imperfect, and that’s a condition that requires special equipment and expertise that’s not available here, so the doctor has already identified the case, and we’re planning to work on that case to send that child to the U.S. for surgery.”


Dr. Aaron Boyles

“We do see some conditions where the local resources limit our ability. I think the most striking one would be the limited physical therapy resources. Some of these children require very intensive physical therapy after surgery, but we’ve also been wonderfully amazed and blessed to see how the children and people of Belize overcome some of those limited resources and still have wonderful outcomes from their surgeries.”


Nineteen of the children will have received surgery by Friday. Meanwhile, another mission will be in Belize in a few weeks to provide young patients who need braces and other forms of orthotics to support their mobility. Marion Ali reporting for News Five.


Doctor Boyles indicated that the procedures and therapy could run in the tens of thousands of U.S. dollars per child.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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