“I have a dream” – Martin Luther King 1963
Making a difference to the lives of 9,000 babies who are born with clubfoot in Indonesia every year
Indonesia has one of the highest incidences of clubfoot - 2 per 1,000 live births, double that of the developed world according to Dr Ucok Siregar, Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeon at Medistra Hospital Jakarta.
Clubfoot is a developmental deformation which affects the foot and leg. It occurs in the second trimester of pregnancy and in 50 percent of cases it affects both feet..
Clubfoot can be treated surgically or non-surgically. Less than 5 percent of infants born with clubfoot require surgical correction.
The ‘gold standard’ treatment is considered to be the far less costly and less invasive ‘Ponseti method of serial casting’. This method has been shown to have the best long term outcomes with over 90 percent of children having complete restoration of normal gait and function throughout their life.
Other than Body Clinic, which is located in the capital city Jakarta, there is no access to non-surgical Ponseti method of serial casting and bracing in Indonesia.
Body Clinic has delivered Ponseti services to clubfoot babies since 2006 through charitable donations of individuals and clubs. Many follow up appointments have had to be attended at the child’s home on remote islands. The results for these children have been outstanding – a life-changing gift.
Dr Peter Norton, Founder of Yayasan Bantuan Kesehatan Indonesia said: “We want to help a lot more children, but need assistance from philanthropists and donors to realize this dream.”
Dr Peter Norton (center) and his wife Julie (second left) receiving acknowledgement from Rotary Seminyak’s Patricia Jamieson (left) and President, Robert Kempner along with Tania Ionker (right) for treatment of Sintia Lestari
The loving and healing hands of Dr Norton inspires confidence in both the child and family
Kaki Bali Project
We need your help to provide this service that will change the lives of Indonesian clubfoot children forever.
Yayasan Bantuan Kesehatan Indonesia has the objective of establishing a dedicated clubfoot service in Bali named “Kaki Bali” which means Bali Foot.
Julie Norton, Director of Body Clinic said: “Many of our clubfoot patients have come from isolated islands towards the east of Indonesia, so having a facility in Bali would be less costly to access for these remote families and children. Plus it is a more familiar environment for people accustomed to island life than coming to the chaotic metropolis of Jakarta with upwards of 14 million inhabitants.
The cost of treating each child is about Rp 30 to 40 million or US$3,260 (one foot) to US$4,350 (both feet) which includes, the series of casts over an 8 to 12 week period (we are able to treat children as old as 7 years, which requires a longer period of casting than for babies), bracing and special shoes which need to be changed due to growth, plus 5 to 6 repeat consultations over a 2 to 4 year period to ensure compliance and manage relapse if any. Transport and housing of the patients and their carer may be additional if not located locally.
Surgery by comparison costs are in excess of US$70,000 due to requirement for repeat surgeries throughout the growth phase. Under this type of management though, the child is never able to walk normally.
It is our hope that Kaki Bali becomes a center for podiatrists and orthopods worldwide to donate their time and energy in providing voluntary services and honing their skills in Ponseti management.
“Dr Norton will become “the Dr Fred Hollows of the feet” – Gail Carmody
Dr Norton is a podiatrist who specializes in biomechanics for adults and children, a sub-specialty of podiatry which corrects malalignment of the feet and legs usually via orthotic therapy. To patients with chronic pain symptoms in the feet, legs, knees, hips or back, it is like a miracle cure.
Since 2005 after a 25 year, high profile career in Sydney Australia, which included providing podiatric services for three of Australia’s Prime Ministers and members of three royal families in Asia and the Middle East, Dr Norton has pursued his interest in servicing foot health of Indonesians, a population devoid of medical grade foot care.
Dr Norton said: "Indonesia has a population of almost 250 million, most of which are flat footed. It has the 4th highest incidence of diabetes in the world (which leads to diabetic foot disease) and one of the highest incidences of clubfoot. It is estimated that there are 9,000 babies born with clubfoot annually in Indonesia, very few of which are treated.."
Gail Carmody, a long-term patient of Dr Norton said about him: “he is one of the few practitioners who actually has ‘healing hands’. I have been treated by numerous podiatrists who just don’t have the same touch. It’s unique. Once Peter touches your feet you feel secure. You are literally in secure hands. Now that he is looking to increase his philanthropic work, I can definitely see him becoming the Fred Hollows of the feet.”
Dr Norton is registered with the Indonesian Ministry of Health, Department of Manpower and Ministry of Education as a specialist “Health Trainer”. To date he has transferred knowledge in podiatric procedures to 5 registered nurses, 2 doctors and numerous technicians.
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