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Steps2Walk – Transforming Lives Of Clubfoot Patients In Namibia

todayJuly 13, 2023 146

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Nedbank and FNB generously donated N$200 000 each to the project. Image provided by Marelize Robberts.

 

Steps2Walk Non-Profit Organization: Changing Lives of Clubfoot Patients in Namibia

The Steps2Walk organization is a non-profit group that has been changing the lives of many patients in under-served regions of the world, by providing surgical care for foot and ankle deformities while educating orthopedic surgeons. Steps2Walk believes that educating surgeons will help thousands of people across the globe achieve a better quality of life.

Founded in 2000, Dr. Mark Meyerson and his team of specialists have been treating disabling deformities that limit their patients from leading productive lives. The majority of their patients have suffered from these ailments since childhood and it has continued into adulthood, limiting their productivity, participation in household and community activities, and leading to profound psychological impairment.

Many of these deformities are very complex and even with modern facilities, Steps2Walk’s humanitarian programs are faced with difficult decisions and little equipment with which to work. To give patients the best possible outcome, they have spent a significant amount of time advance planning and implementing treatment in the most sustainable way. While this is always a challenge, it is incredibly rewarding.

Skills transfer in the Lady Pohamba Training Room. Image provided by Marelize Robberts.

This year, the Steps2Walk team is making a difference in Namibia. Dr. Jonck, who did his orthopaedic training in Tygerberg Hospital, Cape Town, has partnered with Dr. Mark Myerson since 2018, and the surgeons have been working to make a difference in Namibia. The Ministry of Health and Social Services of Namibia has granted the team access to their patients, and they have been able to select 19 patients to attend patient examinations. Here, the team evaluated and assessed the patients to determine the surgical procedures to be carried out.

The actual surgeries were live-streamed at Lady Pohamba Private Hospital this year, and Steps2Walk aimed to promote “Continues Professional Development” through the Health Professions Council of Namibia. The surgeries in theatre were live-streamed to the Training Room, where 10 Namibian and three South African doctors were given the opportunity to witness and learn from the surgeries in real-time. Dr. Mark Myerson and his team transferred their knowledge and skills to local healthcare providers to educate their peers.

The Steps2Walk initiative in Namibia wouldn’t have been possible without generous sponsorship from companies such as Nedbank and FNB, who sponsored N$200,000 each for this amazing initiative. Killian Orthopaedics, Geka Pharma, NamHealth, and Sun Medical also contributed by donating much-needed medical equipment and disposables. Gondwana assisted the team by providing accommodation at a discounted rate for all the international delegates for the week. Namrad sponsored all medical imaging needed for the procedures. Lady Pohamba Private Hospital opened their doors and training rooms for this week-long event by welcoming the patients and families alike. The Ministry of Health and Social Services and HPCNA have granted access to the patients and welcomed the foreign doctors with open arms.

If you wish to get involved in this incredible initiative, get in touch with Dr. Jonck’s practice, and speak to Madelein, their dedicated outreach coordinator, to find out more.

For more information about Steps2Walk, visit their website HERE.

Contact details for Dr. Jonck Orthopedic Practice:

Telephone:  +264 83 335 5060

Email: admin4@iway.na

 

Written by: Christine Venter

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