Medical camp to assist people with cerebral palsy & other disabilities in former conflict zone of Mullaitivu

02/11/2016 – Mullaitivu, Sri Lanka:  The Sri Lanka Red Cross Society (SLRCS) Mullaitivu Branch in association with the Regional Director of Health Services of Mullaitivu and in partnership with the German Federal Ministry of Economic Development Corporation (BMZ) and with technical support from Motivation Sri Lanka and the Mannar Association for Rehabilitation of Differently Able people organized medical camp recently in order to assist people with disabilities within the district. The camp specially focused on patiences affected by cerebral palsy.

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Cerebral Palsy is considered a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development. Cerebral Palsy primarily affects body movement and muscle coordination. Though Cerebral Palsy can be defined, having Cerebral Palsy does not define the person that has the condition.

An individual with Cerebral Palsy will likely show signs of physical impairment. However, the type of movement dysfunction, the location and number of limbs involved, as well as the extent of impairment, will vary from one individual to another. It can affect arms, legs, and even the face; it can affect one limb, several, or all.

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Cerebral Palsy affects muscles and a person’s ability to control them. Muscles can contract too much, too little, or all at the same time. Limbs can be stiff and forced into painful, awkward positions. Fluctuating muscle contractions can make limbs tremble, shake, or writhe.

Balance, posture, and coordination can also be affected by Cerebral Palsy. Tasks such as walking, sitting, or tying shoes may be difficult for some, while others might have difficulty grasping objects.

Other complications, such as intellectual impairment, seizures, and vision or hearing impairment also commonly accompany Cerebral Palsy.

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Over 170 patience were treated by the medical camp. Many living in the area do not have access to proper medical care that would treat cerebral palsy. Information on how to take care of patiences were provided by volunteers of SLRCS Mullaitivu branch at the camp.

The main reason to organize such a camp was based on the needs in the area. As the district was cut off from the rest of the country during the 30 year old conflict, many living in the area are either not aware of the conditions or do not have the knowledge in getting proper treatment for people living with disabilities.

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