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of the month
By Barb Corol
Angel Majia Chavez
Angel was born with a cleft palate coupled with an abnormal growth. He is now 18 months old and the ‘after’ picture is post his reconstructive surgery, the first of many he will undergo in his young life.
Mom, Rosa Maria, was destitute at the time of Angel’s birth having been abandoned. She became very depressed. She had nowhere to go, felt alone and unwanted and now had a baby to care for who had his own needs.
Shortly after birth, baby Angel was rushed to the Hospital Civil as he was having trouble breathing. Tests revealed he had Klebsiella Pneumoniae and any infection caused by this condition can be fatal if not treated with the correct antibiotics. Unfortunately, baby Angel had developed both lung and urinary tract infections. His condition was critical.
Given his delicate condition, the doctors deemed it crucial that Mom stay in hospital during baby Angel’s recovery which turned out to be a blessing in disguise. She was instructed on how to care and feed him properly and she learned that in cases of a cleft palate, correct burping was very important. She was also trained on how to use an epipen. This will help alleviate bronchial spasms and wheezing that baby Angel might experience. He would leave the hospital with a cocktail of medications to help combat infections and boost his immune system.
During the intake, the social worker learned that Rosa Maria had an older brother whom they contacted. When baby Angel was released from hospital, they were invited to live with her brother and his family in Jocotopec. Mom was feeling somewhat better about her situation.
Rosa Maria’s brother suggested she go and talk to the DIF (Family Development) in Jocotopec to see what help they could offer. It was during their interview that DIF recommended she come back on Wednesday as they felt certain Niños Incapacitados would be able to help.
Rosa Maria brought baby Angel to our clinic in November 2010. We assessed her situation and agreed she met the qualifications to be a Niños Incapacitados client. Rosa Maria knew baby Angel needed to have the reconstructive surgery. We provided her with the necessary funds and directions to the Reconstruction Hospital in Guadalajara who performs this type of surgery free of charge. We then arranged to get her an appointment with a doctor in Jocotopec who has since taken her and baby Angel on as patients.
Since the surgery, Niños Incapacitados has paid for multiple x-rays, medications and a dental retainer. Baby Angel has also started daily therapy which we are covering. Rosa Maria sees a ray of light for her and Angel given all the new supports she has in place. In the meantime Angel is scheduled for more reconstructive surgery in August of this year.
Rich Petersen, who normally writes our “Child of the Month” articles, is being given a much deserved break for a few months. As Director of the Jocotopec Clinic, I’m delighted to have the opportunity to tell you about some of our children. It’s too far for them to travel to be introduced at one of our regular monthly meetings, so this is an ideal forum for you to meet them.
To learn more about Niños Incapacitados, please visit our website at www.programaniños.org or call Rich Petersen (376-765-5511) or Barb Corol (376-766-5452).