BINTULU: A total of 18 patients aged between one year and 18 years have registered for cleft lip and palate corrective surgery at Columbia Asia Hospital Bintulu (CAHB) this year.

Columbia Asia Hospital -Miri regional general manager Yeoh Kim Looi said under its cleft lip and palate charity project, a total of 356 corrective surgeries have been successfully carried out since 2004.

“Over the past 14 years, this charity project has benefited many patients and brought cheers to the parents,” said Yeoh to reporters after the presentation of mock cheques by 15 sponsors at CAHB in Tanjung Kidurong yesterday. CAHB general manager Hazlim Sham Ibrahim said the cleft lip and palate project is being carried out until July 15.

“This is the second time CAHB is having this project since the first one in 2011,” he said.

This charity project is funded by The Cleft Lip and Palate Association of Malaysia (CLAPAM). CAHB provides venue for surgeries and facilities as well as other necessary assistance for patients and their guardians.

Meanwhile, a plastic surgeon Dr Kim Tan who was present at the press conference explained that it would take about a week for a patient to recover from an operation.

The corrective surgery, he explained, will be carried out in stages depending on the different types of cleft lip and palate.

“Sometimes, it is just one side, sometimes two sides, or it would involve the palate inside but the most common one is one side of the mouth unilateral,” he explained.

Asked about the total cost of corrective surgery for one patient, Dr Kim said in the private hospital, it would cost between RM8,000 and RM10,000.

The 15 sponsors for the charity project are Harbour-Link Group, Columbia Asia Hospital Management, Jenny Wee, Jong Nam Kiau, Pui Tin Soon, Lai Ah Huat, Miri Mayor Adam Yii, Bintulu Edible Oil Sdn Bhd, Spring Medicare Sdn Bhd, Berry Medical Healthcare Sdn Bhd, Press Metal Sdn Bhd, Naim Land Sdn Bhd, Bintulu Port Authority, Datuk Lee Kim Shin and Suasana Mentari.

This news first appeared in Borneo Post Online, 13 July 2018.