140 year of Shriners

140 year of Shriners

Friday, November 6, 2009

Children have shot at free medical treatment


An opportunity for free medical treatment is being offered for children under the age of 18.

To qualify for treatment, the children must be examined sometime between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday morning at Sierra View District Hospital’s lobby by doctors and representatives from Shriners Hospital for Children.
They are looking for birth defects and other bone-related conditions.

Those who qualify, will receive treatment at a Shriners Hosptial, where children with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries and cleft lip and palate are eligible for admission and receive care in a family-centered environment at no cost.

Exams have been held in Porterville for about the last 10 years, and Dr. Ronald Marmolejo has long been a part. He has seen a multitude of patients with health issues, like a 7-year-old who could not run because one of his legs stopped growing.

“It’s a very nice mission,” Marmolejo said. “A lot of families don’t have the funds.”

The number of patients who are selected will be dependent on who qualifies, but it is common for Porterville-area children to be chosen. They typically receive treatment in about a month after the exam, according to volunteer Roy Pond.

Pond is encouraging people to come Saturday to “take care of their medical needs,” he said.

The Northern California Shriners Hospital is one of 22 Shriners Hospitals in North America, and specializes in treating the following childhood disorders: spina bifida, congenital absence of limbs, spinal deformities, limb deficiencies and irregularities, diseases of the bones and joints, burn injuries and rehabilitation and spinal cord injuries and rehabilitation.

-- Contact Jenna Chandler at 784-5000, Ext. 1050, or jchandler@portervillerecorder.com.

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