Children's Health service

 Project 1101

Mareth Zalasar, Cornea transplantation / COMPLETED 12 May 2014
Description of Project:
Mareth Zalasar is a thirteen year old daughter of a Mamanwa tribal couple in Taganito, Claver. During a routine examination of her younger sister that is a godchild, her parent asked for help due to fading ability to see.
It shows out that Mareth has got a virus that has given her Post-Measles Keratitis, which is a corneal opacity in the cornea. Her left eye was growing blind, while her right eye had a small visible green spot. The ophthalmologist explained that her left eye was too late to save, while he wanted to make a try in saving her right through medication.
The ophthalmologist explained that he thought that this kind of disease was erased from the Philippines already, since all children is given vaccination to prevent this. Still, this child is a tribal, and they don't attend any doctor, midwife or hospitals in their region.
The only solution as he could see to give her the sight back on her left eye is to find a cornea and execute a transplantation of the cornea. This kind of surgery is only executed in two places within the Philippines, Metro Manila and Davao city. Since the child not can be separated, or even brought with a parent, or relative, to Manila, due to its belonging to a local tribe that have no experience of such journeys (they are too afraid to do), the only option is to execute in Davao.
However, Davao is still far from the home of the tribal child and her tribe, approximately 450-500km. It is needed training and education to her parents and tribal chieftain and council about her disease and ability to cure, but also how to travel, eat and live during the operation. The tribe is very anomalistic, and has no trust to the modern medical aid that can be given.
We are therefore in a situation in which we want to prevent other to be blind by the same reasons, but also help her out of her growing blindness. Most important right now, since she is a grade two student in the Elementary school and in the age in which she easiest can learn reading.
We need therefore to aim financially for several goals in the healing of Mareth Salazar. Namely:
1. Education to her parents about the disease and how it can be treated and cured, also about nourishment to prevent loss of vitamin A and other essential vitamins for the function of the body.
2. Education to the tribal council about viruses and how it can be to epidemic traps for the tribe without vaccination. Why it is important to give tribal members right to be vaccinated and what it means to come to health check-up.
3. Education to teachers, village councillors, company relation officer's, social workers and other, with the tribal as a part in their territory, about how to cooperate and coordinate medical help and examinations in a way that the tribal can understand and accept participation.
4. Vaccination of children against diseases, as decided by the government’s health department for Philippine children.
5. Execution of transplantation of the cornea for Mareth Salazar. Travel, food and lodging costs as well as return visit to the hospital.
A cornea can be found to an adult within a month from the eye bank in Manila, but in the case with Mareth, it is not certain how long time it can take. The price is set due to the analysis that the cornea must undergo to be screened free from diseases as hepatitis, HIV etc. and costs for transportation to Davao.
Chemical analysis costs are estimated to 20,000 pesos and other costs approximated to 5,000 pesos. We estimate the total cost for the patient, including fare, food, lodging and assistance to approximate 15,000 pesos, which gives us a total of approximate 40,000 pesos to treat Mareth.
We will ask for your ability to give a donation since this operation will give us expenses that are beyond our savings, and as you see, we also tries to find local sponsors through different charity programs, government and other organizations.
In the case of Mareth, we will seek help from two other instances.
1.      MSWD in Claver, which is the municipality where Taganito belongs
2.      NCIP is the governmental organ for the indigenous people, and they have funding for Mamanwa, as for other tribes. In this case it is needed that the chieftains are cooperative to us and the family, to release money for this issue.
In case 1 and 2 above, DMC take responsibility that money is paid out to the hospital from these departments. The only part they ask our assistance with, is that we make sure that the patient brings a verification of social status, a reference from the barangay captain and doctors report from the ophthalmologist. Since we have extra expenses, however, in shape of transports, food, hotel, and hygiene utilities but also because of the education we now need to start to show the tribe the importance of vaccination to the children, and even so to the adult, means that we are very thankful if you want to give a gift for this purpose.
The total cost for the treatment, point 4 above, with visit for evaluation and measurement and revisit for the transplantation, including costs for the cornea, has been estimated to approximately 40,000 pesos. Costs for education is ongoing, but in any case, we are happy for any donation of any size, since many small donations gives us the opportunity to help as well as one bigger. In case of turnover, it will be saved to our account for children who need help with doctor.
CONCLUSION of finance
Collection of funds will be executed through two projects numbers, CYP1101 and CYP1100.
Since CYP1101 is directed to the treatment of the described child, money donated under that account will be used for the costs pointed for her: fare, food, lodging, assistance, and parent’s education, parent following during treatment, return visit and aftercare.
If you want to contribute for the help in this case, mark your payment one of following:

The project has reached the goal. The girl has got her transplant, have a goos sight on her eye, and is now back with her family.

Children with measles eat less and suffer from diarrhoea, so that there is lower intake of essential foods as well as poorer absorption. The result can be a shortage of vitamin A for critical parts of the body such as: the eye, the lining cells of the airways leading to the lungs, the gut, and the immune cells which are part of the defence system against infection.
Those children who have measles and already have low levels of vitamin A in their liver reserves may get severe vitamin A deficiency. One way severe vitamin A deficiency damages the eye and threatens sight is by drying and causing ulceration of the cornea.
The child in the slide has a large corneal ulcer due to vitamin A deficiency after measles. I'lic corneal ulcer appears yellow green on the slide due to staining with fluoroscein. Only one eye was affected in this child, although corneal ulcers due to vitamin A deficiency after measles may affect both eyes at the same time.
This child was treated with tetracycline 1% eye ointment three times daily for seven days, given a pad to protect the eye, and also given large doses of vitamin A supplements for two consecutive days. The child was then brought back by the parents a week later for examination of the eye and a further dose of vitamin A supplement. Eventually the child ended up with a white scar on the cornea, but still useful vision in the eye.
The point to note is that such severe corneal damage could have been prevented if the nutritional status of the child had been better before measles infection, or if vitamin A supplements had been given in the acute stage of measles infection.
Delay in bringing the child to treatment can cost the child partial loss of sight. It could have been worse - the child might be completely blind.
Donations can be swished in Sweden to:    9004599
or paid to us in EURO or SEK on followed account:
90 04 59-9 EUR
90 04 59-9 SEK
IBAN SE31 9500 0099 6042 0418 2960
Bank: NORDEA Sweden
For further information, please contact:
FTMS Filipino Tribe Mission Sweden                                               Reg. No: 802422-2393
Att: Klaveness
Ekgatan 7B
S213 63 Malmö, Sweden
Phone: +46 40 497 969
Cell Phone: +46 705 987 266
90 04 59-9 SEK & EUR
9004599    Swish
Bg 900-4599
Print if payment is in SEK or EURO
Bank: NORDEA Sweden
IBAN SE31 9500 0099 6042 0418 2960
FTMW Filipino Tribe Mission Welfare Inc. Philippines                    Reg. No: CN200525494
FTMW Office:
Roaming: +63 921 274 3904 Smart Roaming
Cell Phone: +63 910 139 7436

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