To help polio survivors in developing countries ambulate, be independent and become important citizens of a nation by providing them with an exceptional comprehensive and holistic post-polio rehabilitation care including corrective surgery, physical therapy, orthotic/ prosthetic services and home-environment remodeling services.
The Center for Post-Polio Rehabilitation (CfPPR) is a non-profit 501c(3) organization that presents a unique model of self-help where polio survivors set example of independent and self-resilient individuals who not only make contributions towards health improvements of others, but also act as role models for others.
- To set local partners in countries where polio rehabilitation services are and will be provided who will work collaboratively with the Center team.
- To provide post-polio rehabilitation services (free of cost) to polio services with particular emphasis on children and adolescents in polio endemic countries.
- To design a central surveillance database of all polio survivors in countries where services are and will be provided.
- To arrange free surgery camps for polio- survivors (also other neuromuscular conditions) in developing countries and perform free surgeries, provide needed physiotherapy services post-surgery, provide orthotics and other needed support to polio-survivors in collaboration with locally based surgical and rehabilitation teams
- To help polio survivors become independent citizens of their country by providing them education and training/skills so they can be productive and self- compliance to contribute to nations need.
About Polio and its burden in Developing Countries.
Poliomyelitis, most commonly known as Polio, is one of the infectious diseases that has claimed millions of lives and has been a cause of concern for WHO & many other health agencies. While the incidence of Polio has markedly decreased in the developed world, it is still far from being eliminated in many developing countries (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nigeria etc.). Moreover, polio remain endemic in three countries i.e. Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria. The goal of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (http://polioeradication.org/) is to complete the eradication and containment of all wild, vaccine-related and Sabin polioviruses, such that no child ever again suffers paralytic poliomyelitis. While most of the resources and time have been spent towards eradicating polio in these countries, very little attention has been paid towards polio survivors who already have polio and have been living in difficult situations and in a state of dependency on others. The situation is worse particularly for females in these developing countries, where level of poverty is very high and literacy is low. There are few NGOs that have helped these survivors by providing some rehabilitation services but by in-large this group of individuals have been neglected of the attention they deserve, and therefore are under-treated. Moreover, due to high illiteracy and low education in many of these countries, these polio survivors (majority are females) have been left alone to fight this war against a biased and divided society.
CfPPR was founded in 2008 by Dr. Sunita Dodani, a physician and a polio survivor with extra-ordinary capabilities. CfPPR team with the help of local partners have been providing post-polio rehabilitation services free of cost by arranging free polio rehabilitation camps in some of the developing countries where polio is still prevalence and endemic. These services include but not limited;
a) identifying polio survivors (and other neuro-muscular disorder patients) from many places within a country including orphan schools;
b) providing post-polio care options and offering free corrective surgeries performed by CfPPR partners;
c) offering physical therapy to polio-survivors;
d) providing education on importance of rehabilitation services to polio survivors by CfPPR team to the local health staff in the local hospital in these developing countries;
e) advising and supporting families of polio survivors on improving/ remodeling house to make it accessible and comfortable for polio survivors;
f) teaching polio survivors’ families about polio and its consequences so that attention can be given on the prevention of post-polio syndrome at early age; and
g) teaching skills of becoming independent and self-sufficient to the polio survivors.
The CfPPR team have already established partnerships with many hospitals who support the Center mission and work with CfPPR team. Several of free polio rehabilitation services/ surgery camps have been arranged and many polio survivors have been treated. In addition CfPPR also work very closely with rotary club in coordinating these activities in the polio endemic countries such as Pakistan. Details on surgery camps is provided under events.