Minister Jagutpal meets Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon at Victoria Hospital

Mauritius: The Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Kailesh Kumar Singh Jagutpal, met this morning at the Victoria Hospital in Candos, the Director of the Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital in Teynampet in India, and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, Dr S.M.Balaji.

Dr S.M Balaji is currently on a one-week mission in Mauritius for the screening of 35 Mauritian patients suffering from cleft lip and cleft palate, as well as to participate in lecture sessions on Early Cleft Care and Fixed Mechanotherapy for Mauritian dental surgeons at the Victoria Hospital. He is accompanied by his team and will be assisted locally by the medical staff of the hospital during the training sessions.

In a statement, Dr Jagutpal highlighted that Dr Balaji and his team have been in Mauritius as part of the collaboration between the Victoria Hospital and the Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital since August 2022. This collaboration, he underscored, aims at offering better care to cleft lip and cleft palate patients.



The Health Minister recalled that several initiatives were undertaken as regards the treatment of cleft lip and cleft palate patients following the previous official visit of Dr Balaji to Mauritius

They include: 

  • The signature of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Health and Wellness and the Non-Governmental Organisation,
  • Smile Train Association,
  • Aiming to provide children born with cleft with comprehensive and psychosocial care and;
  • The improvement of multidisciplinary treatments involves, among others, orthodontists, speech therapists, paediatricians and gynaecologists.

On this note, Dr Jagutpal reiterated the commitment of his Ministry to provide the best possible care to children and adults who have cleft lip and cleft palate and commended the Smile Train Association for their assistance. 

He emphasised that this is the first time that the treatment of such patients is being catered for in a public hospital in Mauritius.

In addition, Minister Jagutpal remarked that during this one-week visit, Dr Balaji and his team would guide and teach new techniques to concerned Medical Officers on how to better treat patients with cleft lip and cleft palate deformities. 

Image credit: Mauritius Facebook Page

He also thanked Dr Balaji for offering Victoria Hospital equipment and consumables, which will be used for the treatment of cleft lip and cleft palate patients.

As for Dr Balaji, he commended the Ministry of Health and Wellness for having taken the initiative of treating cleft lip and cleft palate patients in public hospitals, which according to him, has never been done in any other country. 

He also lauded the Ministry’s objective of registering people suffering from congenital cleft deformities on the National Cleft Register. This, he indicated, will help to evaluate patients with congenital cleft deformities and provide medical and non-medical advice to patients or parents of babies suffering from cleft deformities.

Dr Balaji further observed that, following the screening process being performed this week, his team and himself would return to Mauritius after six months to perform oral and maxillofacial surgeries on Mauritian patients for free.

Amelia Jones

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