Strategic initiative needed

Train professionals:: Train professionals to face the challenge of birth defects and craniofacial anomalies. Training must address and increase awareness of the dental needs of cleft lip and/or palate patients, impart knowledge and skills required for intervention and provide updates on emerging approaches. The following points should be remembered while training professionals.

  • HSF needs both financial infrastructure and staff with expertise to train professionals.
  • Next for implementation at national level streamlining and stratification of training is vital.
  • The dental professionals need to be sensitised about craniofacial anomalies and staged treatment requirement.
  • Set up collaboration with experts from various disciplines to value add to the training sessions.

Create media and public awareness: That repair of a cleft palate often requires multiple surgeries over the course of 18 years. The target audience, patients and families are informed so that they can make decisions in a manner that will improve clinical care and overall health. Target audiences include health care providers, consumers, research community and other groups such as educators, policymakers, industry, and media. One of the main challenges of our health communication efforts is to find the most effective way to communicate and disseminate health information, clinical information and research findings to target audiences. Here our strategy is to use communication to make HSF Centres’ services available as well as accepted and approachable to people.

Establish and develop collaborations:Good communication within the cleft team is important. Extractions should be carried out only after consultation with the orthodontist. Consultation with the maxillo-facial surgeon is must if orthognathic surgery is planned. The plastic surgeon has to be seen to discuss the need for further reconstructive surgery. The consultant in restorative dentistry will be involved with the planning and timing of any complex restorative work. Psychological counseling is also needed for patients with a cleft who feel that they are unable to cope with their problems or discuss their worries.

Healing the cleft lip, cleft palate, and craniofacial anomalies cannot succeed as an isolated programme. This must include the preventive, curative and rehabilitative aspects of care.

  • This necessitates network for collaborations and interaction with different science streams and informs them about our various initiatives and developments.
  • This will not only defines HSF’s identity but contribute to various disciplines by contribution our knowledge base thereby creating a relation of bilateral benefits.
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