Pediatric Open-Heart Initiative

Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) is the most common birth defect in the world. As medical care and treatment have advanced, babies with a CHD are living longer and healthier lives except in underdeveloped countries and continents like Africa. CHDs are present at birth and can affect the structure of a baby’s heart and the way it works. They can affect how blood flows through the heart and out to the rest of the body. CHDs can vary from mild (such as a small hole in the heart) to severe (such as missing or poorly formed parts of the heart).

THE NEED

  • About 1 in 4 babies born with a heart defect has a critical CHD (also known as critical congenital heart disease). Babies with a critical CHD need surgery or other procedures in the first year of life. In Africa most children often do not receive this life-saving surgery. 1% of all births in Nigeria die due to Congenital Heart Disease.
  • Undiagnosed children above 14 years of age have an increased mortality rate with certain CHD’s and would therefore have a higher risk of death before the age of 20.
  • 85000 children suffer yearly from Congenital Heart Disease while less Less than 112 paediatric open-heart surgeries are performed each year in most Africa countries. We have found that most children in Africa are under-screened and underdiagnosed, CHD screening at birth by medical practitioners is currently being practised at less than 1% of Nigerian hospitals. Most countries in the continent lack the basic infrastructure and personnel to provide the required screening and surgical services for these children. 

African children who get diagnosed with CHD typically get referred abroad to centres in India, UK and US for surgery.  We have found that children who require open-heart surgery in Africa have higher mortality rates than other continents primarily because of the lack of services offered in Africa and lack of funds. Only a few families are able to afford the associated international costs while the other children lead to an untimely death.

ABOUT THE INITIATIVE.

Hospitals for Humanity’s pediatric Open-Heart Initiative is a program designed to 

Raise awareness about heart disease and the possibility/availability of in-country, affordable treatment for cardiothoracic issues to dispel a common belief amongst us that high-quality, technically complex medical care is not possible or available in Nigeria;

Effectively carry out time limited and cost effective, free pediatric cardiothoracic surgical in-country projects to address/triage the most pressing needs; The cost of this surgery in India, Us and UK is almost 4x the cost of doing this surgery in Nigeria with Hospital for Humanity.

Partner with the Nigerian government and the country’s healthcare sector to develop the in-country resources (administrative, facility and personnel) to support and sustain high quality, in-country affordable cardiothoracic surgery.

Enable knowledge transfer and capacity building of our local partner institutions with a view to seeing them able to replicate these procedures in the foreseeable future

What we've done so far, with the support of donors like you.

Since 2014 HfH working with a mix of international medical staff from the US, UK and other countries. To date we have: Screened and diagnosed over 1500 children. Carried out 9 PCTSI interventions in Nigeria. Performed Pediatric Cardiothoracic (open heart) surgeries and Cardiac Catheterizations in Nigeria on seventy (70) patients with a 96% success rate at care & management rate comparable to any first-class institution in the world. We are building the capacity of local Nigerian hospitals in the process, one surgical procedure at a time. We achieved this using a mixture of salaried and volunteer medical professionals.

Screened and diagnosed over

1500

Children

Performed

70

Free Pediatric Cardiothoracic (open heart) surgeries and Cardiac Catheterizations in Nigeria.

Our Immediate Goals.

85000 children suffer yearly from Congenital Heart Disease while less than 112 pediatric open-heart surgeries are performed each year in most Africa countries. Hospitals for Humanity’s pediatric Open-Heart Initiative is a program designed to address this issue. Our immediate goal are;

Goal 1

To provide yearly, pediatric open-heart surgery for 250 children with Congenital Heart Disease in Nigeria for the next 5 years.

Goal 2

Skill and knowledge transfer from our US based team of experts to Local medical staffs in Nigeria as they will work in hand on procedures.

Goal 3

Reach the most vulnerable children irrespective of proximity with no cost to the child or parent.

Goal 4

Increase the awareness of CHD symptoms within communities

Goal 5

Decrease Children mortality rate and increase the Human Capital Index Nigeria.

Save a little heart

1000+ Childrenin our waitinglist need you.

Currently, we have a revolving list of over 1000 children in our data base who are CHD positive and need open-heart surgery immediately. It is revolving because at least 1 child on our list will die per week.

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