In countries lacking resources, childrens’ injuries are often untreated, leaving them vulnerable, in pain, and on the fringes of society. CURE provides life-changing surgeries and demonstrates the love of Jesus to children with disabilities through a global network of eight children’s hospitals.
The Healing Journey
OUR MEDICAL PROCESS
CURE Children’s Hospitals are world-class facilities with highly trained surgeons and caregivers providing specialized care for children with disabilities. From pre-surgery evaluation, through surgeries, physical therapy, and mobility device fitting, children receive comprehensive, transformational care.
CURE mobile clinics meet children in need of treatment near their homes for evaluation and admittance to a CURE Children’s Hospital.
ADMITTED TO CURE
Once they arrive and are checked in, children are admitted to the ward where the medical team takes their vital signs and make preparations for their upcoming surgery.
Just before surgery, children are given an assessment by the anesthesiologist and pediatrician in preparation for surgery.
This is the moment we have all been waiting for. The CURE medical team prepares the child for surgery, calms their nerves, and prays for the success of their upcoming procedure.
REST & RECOVERY
After surgery, the child is monitored by the CURE medical staff in a post operative space and then brought back to the ward to continue their recovery. The average stay for a single surgery is six days.
In the ward, the medical team routinely checks on the child’s surgical site, cleans their frame, or changes their cast or bandages.
Physical therapy is the next step for children that had surgery on their arms or legs. The CURE team helps the children with exercises to strengthen their muscles and improve their mobility.
FINAL ASSESSMENTS & DISCHARGE
We love caring for each child and the goal is for them to get healed and get home! Our medical team completes ward rounds daily to assess the child’s healing progress and discharge the ones that are stable with a follow up plan for continued care.
Many children that we treat require devices to help them with their mobility. They are supplied with crutches, walkers, or fitted with special orthotics to help with their recovery at home.
FOLLOW UP APPOINTMENTS
Patients are scheduled for follow-up care so we can track their healing journey. Many times this happens at mobile clinics near their home. It is great to see all of the progress they make!
Examples of Treatable Disabilities
CURE Children’s Hospitals treat children with a variety of disabling conditions that often go uncared for in countries that have a lack of access to resources. Without treatment, these children are more vulnerable, often in pain, and left on the fringes of society.
A leg (or legs) that bows outward at or below the knee. This condition puts stress on the legs, which can be painful. The bow usually worsens over time, further limiting a child’s mobility and social interaction.
For a broken bone, a trip to the emergency room is commonplace in high income countries, but for many around the world, broken bones often go untreated. The bone heals in the wrong position and leaves children with a disability and vulnerable to neglect and bullying.
Cleft Lip & Cleft Palate
A congenital condition characterized by one or more clefts (separations) in the upper lip or by a split in the roof of the mouth. This condition causes dental issues, feeding problems, and significant social challenges.
A congenitally misshapen foot twisted out of position, often resembling the angle of a golf club. Children can present with this condition on one or both feet, and it is very difficult for children to walk and be active.
A permanent shortening of muscle, tendon, or scar tissue producing deformity or distortion that is usually seen as severe scarring caused by untreated burns. This condition is common in medically underserved areas of the world.
Often fatal if untreated, this is an abnormal increase in the amount of cerebrospinal fluid within the cranial cavity that expands cerebral ventricles, enlarges the skull and forehead, and causes atrophy of the brain.
A condition in which the legs curve inward at the knees. Like bowed legs, knock knees can be painful and worsen over time because of the stress caused on the legs. Children with knock knees often experience bullying and rejection.
A condition in which one leg is bowed outward and the other leg is bowed inward, causing the legs to look “windswept.” This treatable condition is severely debilitating and can cause pain, limitation of movement, and limping.
A congenital condition that occurs when the spine and spinal cord do not form properly. Treatment involves surgery and, in some cases, ongoing medical care. Spina Bifida is more prevalent in areas where malnutrition exists.
Healing the Whole Person
8 WAYS WE MEET SPIRITUAL NEEDS
At CURE Children’s Hospitals around the world, our staff is trained to reflect kingdom values in their work and to seek opportunities to share God’s love in word and deed. Below are just a few examples of how that happens.
Spiritual team members travel with the mobile clinic team to meet kids and their families who will be admitted to CURE. They counsel their families on what to expect at a CURE Children’s Hospital.
WELCOME, YOU BELONG
Patients are warmly welcomed as they enter the hospital, which sets the tone for their entire experience. It is important for them to know they are loved and accepted.
TELL ME YOUR STORY
Our staff members provide ongoing prayer and counseling for children and families who often bring heavy burdens and emotional trauma.
YOU ARE LOVED BY GOD
Many hospitals begin their day with time in God’s word, prayer and singing.
CAN WE PRAY FOR YOU?
Every operation begins with prayer for the patient and procedure, asking God to bring healing.
FUN IN THE PLAYROOM
Friendships are formed in the playroom while singing and hearing Bible stories that help them discover that they are made in God’s image and loved by Him. Many children and their parents come to trust Jesus during their time at the hospitals.
ENCOURAGEMENT ALONG THE WAY
Staff members show God’s love in practical and fun ways to patients and celebrate their progress.
CONNECTION & SUPPORT
For families that make a faith decision at the hospital, we introduce them to a pastor in their area for church support.
TRAINING THE NEXT GENERATION
In order to provide sustainable, long-term solutions for the 9 million kids living with disabilities in the countries where CURE serves, we train surgeons, medical professionals and partner with local pastors. We strive to not only provide the highest standard of care, but to train others to do the same.
Training for healthcare professionals – Through partnerships with local and national institutions, CURE trains health care professionals to help elevate national health systems’ capacity to treat children with disabilities. Our hospitals host residencies, fellowships and training programs for local physicians, anesthesiologists, nurses, clinical officers and medical students.
Residency programs – Many CURE hospitals have training programs that are integrated within the government training framework. We train residents as part of their pediatric orthopedic or pediatric neurosurgical attachment. These attachments have a clinical and academic focus, preparing residents for their surgical exams and future career.
Fellowships – CURE Kenya and CURE Ethiopia offer a 1-2 year COSECSA approved pediatric orthopedic fellowship program. These established programs are targeted to surgeons who wish to specialize in pediatric orthopedic surgery and become trainers themselves.
Anesthesia training – Several CURE hospitals are training sites for anesthesia residents where they develop skills in pediatric care.
Neurosurgical training – CURE Uganda has a long history of training international surgeons in caring for children with hydrocephalus and brain tumors. This hospital partners with COSECSA to train Ugandan neurosurgical residents as well as ongoing regional training through the CURE Neuro program.
Courses – CURE collaborates with international organizations to run 1-4 day long courses in a variety of specialties to support local training programs.
Training and partnering with the local church – CURE walks alongside local leaders and churches to raise awareness, change perceptions, and promote inclusion by dispelling the harmful, unbiblical beliefs that ostracize children with disabilities from their communities.
Trauma training – CURE offers training in trauma counseling, equipping our entire staff with the tools to help patients and their families heal from social and emotional scars. It addresses the wounds of the heart which can be just as damaging as physical wounds.
Evangelism – CURE provides evangelism training that equips health care staff to be witnesses for Christ in their clinical settings.
Disability and inclusion – CURE partners with local church pastors and offer training that raise awareness on inclusion and correct distorted perceptions.
Advocacy and awareness – Through mobile clinics and outreach events, CURE collaborates with partners such as the Ministry of Health, local and national authorities, government and university hospitals, NGOs, Disabled Persons Organizations, and churches to raise awareness of the plight of children with disabilities and identify vulnerable children that need surgery.
CURE is a worldwide leader in treating children with the life-threatening conditions of hydrocephalus and spina bifida. Our on-site treatment and training hospital in Uganda performs surgeries for thousands of children annually and trains doctors from around the globe.
CURE is truly bringing new hope to hundreds of thousands of families, while also sharing the love of Christ.
Professor Chris Lavy, MD, Oxford University