Mexico Global Grant Update April 2020

July 22, 2020

Every year in Mexico, over 3,000 children are born with clubfoot. Clubfoot is treatable with Ponseti Method, a non-surgical technique using gentle manipulations of the foot, followed by the application of 4 to 6 weekly casts. The Rotary Foundation sponsors a global grant to support Ponseti Method training of 29 orthopedists throughout Mexico.

This Project began with a connection between D-5970 (then) DGE Jozif Gitta and a Cedar Valley (Iowa) Rotary Club member with familial ties to Mexico along with the Ponseti International Association (PIA) based at the University of Iowa. For the Cedar Valley Rotary Club, writing a grant proposal was a new experience and so it was through the mentorship of PIA that Global Grant GG1638227 was written.

One goal of the grant is to train 29 orthopedists affiliated with public hospitals from various cities/states of Mexico, in the Ponseti Method, and then the newly trained orthopedist establishes a Ponseti clubfoot treatment clinic at their hospital. Challenges included establishing a base in Mexico, changing leadership both in the Iowa and Mexican Rotary Clubs/Districts, and fluctuating monetary exchange rates. The grant, originally approved in 2017 is now scheduled to conclude in April 2020 .

The proposal outlined a train-the-trainer model enlisting orthopedic professors previously trained in Ponseti Method, who would serve as trainers/mentors to 2-3 trained orthopedists. These “trainers” would support, guide, and provide feedback regarding how to establish a clinic and how to upload data of treated patients into the International Clubfoot Registry (ICR), as well as make observations and suggestions about the manipulation technique and casting.

Dates and locations of trainings:

  • November 2017 Maternal and Child Regional Hospital in Monterrey, Nuevo León (15 trainers trained)
  • December 2017 Maternal and Child Regional Hospital in Monterrey, Nuevo León (11 orthopedists trained)
  • September 2019 The Shriners Hospital for Children, Mexico City (10 orthopedists trained)
  • January 2020 Hospital Regional Marterno Infantil in Monterrey, Nuevo León (14 professors trained)
  • A planned April 2020 training has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic

The end result of this Project is the expansion of the number of orthopedists, across Mexico properly applying the Ponseti Method to treat clubfoot in their clinics. Already over 200 children have received this life changing treatment. This is just the beginning of a sustainable plan to make the Ponseti Method the main treatment in this region. Global grant GG1638227 has proven to be a good investment in the well-being of the children of Mexico.


Bolivia Ponseti Method training grant approved!

June 30, 2017

Today, The Rotary Foundation approved a Humanitarian Grant in Bolivia with objectives to:

  • provide leadership training to 3 in-country trainers for the didactic aspects of teaching the Ponseti Method and on how to establish an effective nationwide network of clinics that will be recognized by health authorities as providers of the standard-of-care treatment for clubfoot (Ponseti Leadership Training Program);
  • provide training to 6 orthopaedic surgeons that are currently practicing Ponseti Method treatment but they have not received hands-on Ponseti Method mentorship (Practicing Provider Training Program);
  • provide Ponseti Method mentorship to 15 new providers to enable them to treat clubfoot deformity at their respective healthcare facilities (new Provider Training Program); and
  • provide guidance to the in-country trainers and trainees about promoting clubfoot awareness and advocating for the Ponseti Method at the local and national levels.

Location of Ponseti Method Trainers & Trainees

June 29, 2017

View a map that locates Ponseti Method trainers (yellow) and trainees (red) in Brazil:


Ponseti Method Training in Passo Fundo

April 24, 2017

Rotarians are planning a five day Ponseti Method Training in Passo Fundo during May for ten physicians. During the training, trainees first practice the casting technique on plastic foot models many times before they actually apply a cast to a patient’s foot. A Ponseti Method trainer is paired with each trainee to offer guidance and instruction while learning the skill


Look Who’s Walking!

April 13, 2017

 
Ana Clara (22 months old) looks pretty proud showing us her new skill! A year ago, Ana Clara’s caregivers were living with worry about her future. They were not even sure if she’d be able to walk, run and play. Ana Clara was born with clubfoot and the healthcare professionals only offered surgery as the treatment option but she would have to wait until she was two years old. In August 2016, the family learned of a clubfoot clinic at Casa da Esperança, a hospital run by the Rotary Club of Santo André in São Paulo, Brazil. Rotarian, Dra. Tatiana Guerschman treated Ana Clara successfully with Ponseti Method and she is now wearing a foot brace to maintain the correction. Ana Clara’s caregivers are so happy and grateful to The Rotary Foundation and the Rotarians in Districts 4420, 5300, 5970 and 6000 for their support of a Ponseti Method training grant to train 50 physicians in Brazil.


Members of Rotary Club da Bahia Provide Housing for a Child Receiving Ponseti Method Treatment

April 13, 2017

From March 29 – April 2, 2017, a Ponseti Method mentorship training for 9 physicians was held in Salvador, Brazil. While in Salvador, Rotarians Dra. Monica Nogueira and Dra. Tatiana Guerschman visited the Rotary Club da Bahia (D4550) where they explained the prevalence of clubfoot in Brazil and how Rotary is helping training an additional 50 physicians nationwide. Rotary Club da Bahia expressed interest in the clubfoot training project and they even offered assistance to one of the patients receiving Ponseti Method during the training. A young boy, 6-years-old had received Ponseti Method in the past but he’s not been able to complete the castings because the clinic is so far away and there are many other children at home making it difficult for the caretaker to be away from home. The Rotarians of RC da Bahia were so touched by his story that they offered to pay for housing for the young boy and a caretaker to remain in Salvador for the several weeks to complete the casting phase. In addition, RC da Bahia will help finance the printing of the children’s book, The Magic Book – which is a story about a child wearing the brace at night to maintain the foot correction. Proceeds from the sales of the book will go to help the Brazil parents association, Primeiro Passo.


Planning and drafting a Ponseti Method training grant in Bolivia

March 29, 2017

Rotarians in the La Paz Rotary Club and the Iowa City A.M. Rotary Club, along with several Bolivia PIA representatives are in discussions with Ponseti International Association to plan and draft a Ponseti Method training grant.

To reach the ultimate goal of training enough local doctors in the Ponseti Method so that every baby born with clubfoot in Bolivia can receive the most economical and effective treatment available, this project proposes to:

a) provide leadership training to In-country Trainers for the didactic aspects of teaching the Ponseti Method and on how to establish an effective nationwide network of clinics that will be recognized by health authorities as providers of the standard-of-care treatment for clubfoot (Ponseti Leadership Training Program);

b) provide advanced training to 6 orthopaedic surgeons on the more complex aspects of clubfoot and the Ponseti Method (Advanced Ponseti Method Program);

c) provide Ponseti Method mentorship to 15 new providers to enable them to treat clubfoot deformity at their respective healthcare facilities (New Provider Training Program); and

d) provide guidance to the In-country Trainers and trainees about promoting clubfoot awareness and advocating for the Ponseti Method at the local and national levels.

The grant is still being drafted.   Please visit Contact Us or email info@rag4clubfoot.org if your district is interested to assist with funding.


Ponseti Method training in Salvador, Bahia

March 29, 2017

From March 29th – April 2nd, a Ponseti Method mentorship training is occurring in Salvador, Bahia.


Brazil VTT project committee provides updates

January 3, 2017

Participants during Ponseti Method casting practice in Sao Paulo, Aug 2016.

Brazil VTT project committee members, Dra. Monica Nogueira and Dra. Tatiana Guerschman hosted an on-line presentation on December 7th summarizing the initial Ponseti Method training activities held in Sao Paulo during August 2016.  Additional milestones accomplished, include:

  • an opening of a new clubfoot clinic
  • interaction between Ponseti Method providers and the local Rotary club in their community
  • additional meetings with Sao Paulo State governmental officials and
  • dates/location of four future Ponseti Method trainings.

Ponseti Method VTT Team Visits Sao Paulo, Brazil!

October 20, 2016

A four member VTT team from Iowa spent one week in Sao Paulo (Aug 25 – 31) to co-facilitate the Train-the-Trainers training and Ponseti Method mentorship with members of PIA Brazil. Accomplishments at the end of the week included:

  • 12 Trainers completed the Train-the-Trainers training
  • 10 Ponseti Method trainees participated in Ponseti Method mentorship
  • 22 benefitting health facilities

All four VTT members and in-country mentors joined the Santo Andre RC meeting where Dr. Jose Morcuende gave a presentation about the grant. In addition, VTT members met with DGE (4420) Claudio Takata; Santo Andre RC members at Casa da Esperanca; and attended a meeting at the Sao Paulo State Government Health Office with Dr. Geraldo Reple Sobrinho and Dra. Regina and Santo Andre RC members, Dr. Tatiana Guershmann and Adriano Valente. On the final day, two VTT team members visited Dr. Guilherme Bottino Martins and health administrators at Hospital Municipal Infantil Menino Jesus.

The approved Brazil VTT grant is a two year grant that started in August 2016. The Ponseti Method training program aims to provide Train-the-Trainers training to 15 orthopaedic surgeons who in turn will facilitate Ponseti Method mentorship to 50 orthopaedic surgeons.