Changing Children’s Lives Through Specialized Surgery

Visited Count : 47  |  Publish Date : 12/10/2018

UNHCR partners with Chain of Hope charity to bring specialist treatment to refugee children with specific needs

Chain of Hope (Zanjireh Omid) international charity was established in 2007 and offers quality medical services and support to underprivileged and vulnerable children with cardiac, orthopedic and reconstructive conditions regardless of religion, race and nationality. To date, the organization has treated more than 9,400 children This work has been made possible thanks to Chain of Hope’s international network of surgical teams, local health staff, partners, hospitals and health clinics.

Chain of Hope endeavors to provide the following services to children under the age of 18 who are in need of intensive care:

  • Provision of facilities and technical equipment for those requiring specialist care but who are facing challenges in accessing these services
  • Treatment costs for cardiac, orthopedic and reconstructive care
  • Provision of general education facilities for children in need through development and support programs
  • Provision of medical knowledge, equipment and supplies in countries lacking sufficient medical infrastructures
  • Provision of advanced educational facilities and opportunities for local professionals working in the field

Chain of Hope-supported medical teams consisting of professional volunteers and university treatment centers provide intensive care before and after operations, and even provide accommodation to patients travelling from distant cities and villages. Diagnoses and pre- and post-surgery treatments and specialist care are provided in the areas of heart, orthopedic and reconstructive conditions, as well as rehabilitation physiotherapy, occupational therapy (OT) and speech therapy.

The Government of Iran in cooperation with the Iranian Health Insurance Organization (IHIO) and UNHCR enables all refugees in Iran to have access to the Universal Public Health Insurance (UPHI), providing them with medical services similar to that which is offered to Iranian nationals.

In cooperation with UNHCR, Chain of Hope extends this valuable health assistance to the most vulnerable refugee children in Iran. As a result of this cooperation, 37 vulnerable refugee children countrywide received much needed life-saving surgical operations in 2017.

 

Hossein, an 11 year old Afghan boy, is one of these fortunate children. Suffering from an orthopedic abnormality since birth, Hossein’s disability caused excessive ‘finger sticking’ in both hands making it impossible for him to hold any object - even a pencil. This rendered the daily functions of a normal life as next to impossible. Upon hearing about Chain of Hope, Hossein’s mother sought assistance from the charity given that her financial situation was particularly desperate. Hossein’s father previously suffered from drug addiction and had long since deserted Hossein’s mother, leaving her as the family’s sole source of income.  

Upon approaching the charity, Hossein was referred to a pediatric orthopedic surgeon, whose diagnosis called for two important surgeries to his hands. Conducted on his right hand, the first operation was a great success in resolving his ‘sticky fingers’ condition. To the delight of Hossein and his mother, Chain of Hope covered all the associated surgery and hospital costs and, after witnessing what seemed almost impossible just some weeks before, Hossein’s surgery for his left hand was carried out shortly after. The heavy financial costs associated with the specialist treatments required for Hossein’s case would have been unaffordable without Chain of Hope’s support.

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