US Navy doctors help baby with cleft palate

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SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union: The medical team of the US Navy Ship (USNS) Millinocket, that arrived here on August 4 for a humanitarian mission, provided help to a two-months old baby with a cleft lip palate.

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“The child drew my attention and so we followed the child,” USNS Col. Christinesin Hsu, 62nd medical task force commander and born with a Filipino descent, said in an interview during a medical stopover at Barangay Saoay here on Saturday.

Hsu and her medical team composed of dentists, physicians and nurses were conducting a humanitarian mission in some barangays here since they arrived.

The baby boy was named Jan Louie Baldos by his 22-year-old mother, Jasmine Joy Tabor, who said that she has difficulty feeding him with milk because of the condition.

Tabor has to wait for four months to able get a surgeon to look into her baby’s condition, in coordination with the Operation Smile Foundation and local non-governmental organizations to bring him to Subic, Pampanga, where some of the volunteer doctors are based.

“For the mean time, we provide some syringes or additional feeding for a cleft palate into getting the baby in a normal weight,” said Hsu, who also noticed that the baby lacked weight because of feeding difficulties.

The mother said she always turn emotional and feels pity for her child every time she feeds him that he swallowed milk straight through his nose, “I pity my baby when I breastfeed, he is having trouble,” Tabor said.

Hsu and her medical team vowed to provide assistance for her family’s needs to improve the child’s feeding by using a syringe.

The boy’s father, Louie Baldos, 21, expressed his gratitude to the US Navy for the assistance.

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