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Our driving objective at UPTH is to become a world class quartenary hospital, using cutting edge technology and highly developed human resources to render excellent medical care/services to the good people of Rivers State and beyond in-order to markedly reduce the number of patients seeking medical tourism abroad.

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UPTH offers free cleft surgery

 UPTH offers free cleft surgery

With over 300 free cleft lip and palate Surgeries successfully delivered, the University of Port Harcourt Teaching hospital in partnership with Smile train has again organized a week long campaign with surgery for children and adult with such conditions.

Dr. Onwuagha Ijeoma, consultant Plastic/Reconstructive surgeon , who doubles as the coordinator UPTH Smile train, explains “cleft lip/palate is an abnormal opening in the lip and roof of the mouth, it is a cogenital anomaly”. She cleared the bias that cleft lip/palate is a curse or witchcraft, expressing concern of the fact about the difficulties and problems associated with the condition and the experience of ostracisation from the public. She further explains that the cause cannot be attributed to a particular cause but genetic.

Dr Onwuagha , implored parents who have children with such conditions , as well as adults, to come to UPTH to access surgical intervention, without any expense as that has been taken care of by the hospital and Smile Train.

Children cleft lip/palate experience speech, respiratory, hearing difficulties as the case may be. The interesting part about the care as highlighted by the coordinator is that “it is all encompassing with surgical correction, speech therapy, orthodontics, nutritional support” which is provided by a whole team of surgeon (including Paediatric surgeons), Anaesthetics, Oral/Maxillofacial surgeons, clinical psychologist, Orthodontics, Nutritionist, Nurses etc.

Although the project runs all through the year, to raise awareness and have an increased number of recruitment for surgical intervention, the team initiated a week long drive from Monday 19th through 23rd June 2023.

The UPTH Smile Train free cleft and lip palate surgical correction project is aimed at “changing the world, one smile at a time”. This has been delivered for the fourteen (14) years of service in the UPTH center.

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The University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital treats well over 400,000 out-patients per annum, over 10,000 in-patients per annum and well over 3000 surgeries per annum.

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