Cleft Lip & Palate Project (CLIPP)

Project Cleft Lip & Palate Project (CLIPP)
  • Improve the ability to eat, speak, hear and breathe, as well as restore appearance of to 50 targeted benefciaries.
  • Increase knowledge of local caregivers on infection control and post-operative care through ward rounds.
Project Partners Sitagu Ayudana Hospital
  • Reconstructive surgery for congenital facial deformities
  • Teaching sessions to caregivers about infection control and post-operative care
Locations Sagaing, Myanmar
Period 24th June to 1st July, 2015
  • 91 cleft lip and/or palate reconstructive surgeries
  • 5 post-operative caregiver teaching sessions • 0 post-operative infections


According to the Central Women Hospital of Yangon, cleft deformities afect roughly one in every 800 to 1000 babies born in Myanmar. The global average is only one in every 700, resulting in Myanmar having one of the highest prevalence of congenital facial deformities in the world.

Children with a clefts lip or palate can sufer from feeding issues, hearing problems frequent infections and speech problems. These physical deformities tend to elicit responses from others, which can result in low self-esteem, social anxiety and discrimination. The surgery required to address these facial deformities however, is not afordable for hundreds of families from rural communities in Myanmar.


The 2015 Cleft Lip & Palate Surgical mission is the third of its series which has to date beneftted 191. The frst mission started in 2013, wherein, 50 patients with cleft lip or palate received surgery. Subsequently, in 2014 the second mission successfully treated another 50 benefciaries. In 2015, the mission successfully operated on a staggering 91 patients.

MERCY Malaysia together with the local implementing partner, Sitagu Ayudana Hospital, worked together in identifying patients, performing the surgeries, teaching post- operative skills, and transfer of technical knowledge to local medical staff.

During the 8-day mission, to Sitagu Ayudana Hospital, the oral maxilla-facial team operated on a total of 91 cleft lip and palate patients. The number of patients reached was beyond the target number due to the efciency of the medical team and the local staf. All surgeries conducted went smoothly. The lack of post-operative complications can be attributed to the strengthened post-operative care provided by caregivers trained by MERCY Malaysia’s team on post-operative care and early detection of infection and complications. Caregivers were also educated about feeding, care, and what to expect after sutures have been taken out.