After years of being unable to walk properly due to a disability, a teenaged girl is looking forward to a normal life following the intervention by an overseas-based Guyanese.
Shebena Belle, 15, is diagnosed with Clubfoot, a term used to describe foot abnormalities which affect a person’s ability to walk.
Following the intervention by Dr Slater Jeffery, she will be able to undergo a corrective surgery in March 2019.
A statement from the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) of Region Four explained that Dr Jeffery met the Belle family by chance in 2016 when he came to Guyana to secure pigeon peas.
After learning of the young lady’s condition, Dr Jeffery undertook to help her.
“One year ago I had a heart transplant so I have somebody else’s heart in me. I then decided to start a campaign so that something is done for this child and therefore I mobilised a team of persons to help and was directed to the HERO mission,” Dr Jeffery is quoted as saying in the statement.
His intervention includes donating equipment valuing US$40,000 to the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) so the teenager can have access to the surgery.
Dr Jeffery said that since arriving in Guyana he and the family met several times with both the Orthopaedic (bone specialist) surgeon and HERO Mission officials as they decide how the surgery would be done.
He disclosed that the visiting surgeon is Dr Claude B. Scott and the local surgeon would be Dr A. Watson who is the Orthopaedic surgeon at GPHC.
According to the RDC, the equipment would be donated to the GPHC, thus making it easy for other persons plagued with similar challenges to have same surgically corrected.
Dr Jeffrey informed that after visiting the hospital he was made aware that at least 100 persons are in need of similar surgeries.
Shebena, according to the release, expressed that her greatest challenge is being able to traverse stairways, especially at school. As such, she is really looking forward to the surgery.
Her mother, Abena Belle singled out her husband who she said played an exceptional role in Shebena’s life.
“It is the support and help of the father that has kept us going since her birth because he refuses to give up and gives Shebena the support she needs,” the mother said.