In Laos, one children over 600 comes to the world with a facial malformation (cleft lip / palate).

Program details

Purpose: Training of Laotian doctors to facial reconstructive surgery

Beneficiaries: Children and young adults suffering from facial malformations

Period: 2000-2014

  Budget for 2013: 3 050 Euros

Overall financial volume: > 60 000 Euros

Partners: Prof. Christian Dupuis, Mahosot Hospital of Vientiane, Luang Prabang Hospital


These children can not be properly breastfed, and frequently suffer from discrimination. Their only option is a surgical operation that is most of time too expensive for their family. Very few local surgeons are trained for such a delicate operation, and very few families can afford to go into big medical centres that can treat their children the right way.


  • Ensure the training of Laotian surgeons
  • Train at least one surgeon competent in cleft lip operation, plus an anesthesiologist specialized in pediatric matters, for each one of the 18 provinces of Laos.

  • Operate suffering children
  • Guarantee the voluntary families an efficient care at no cost.


Two weeks of training are arranged every year, one within the Mahosot university Hospital of Vientiane, and the other one within the Luang Prabang Hospital.

The courses are taught by experienced local surgeons, such as Dr Keutmy Khansoulivong or Dr Vanpheng Norasing, under the supervision of Dr Christian Dupuis, a famous Belgian surgeon whose work is supported by AMADE since many years.

On every training week, the province surgeons can operate several children or teenagers suffering from cleft lip / palate. All the operating costs (trip, accomodation, hospitalization, pre and post-surgery care) are covered by the program, with no charge for the families. At the end of the week, the surgeons and anesthesiologists get an official certificate from the Hospital and a kit of surgical instruments.

The newly graduate surgeons get an extra experience on the next year: once again managed by the training surgeons, they have the opportunity to perfect the skills they previously showed.

Since the launch of A new smile on life in 2000
  • More than 260 children and teenagers have been operated.
  • 24 surgeons and 6 pediatric anesthesiologists have been successfully trained.
  • All 18 provinces of Laos have been covered.
  • More than 60.000 € have been used to cover the running costs.

Photo gallery

© Bryan Watt

Enfants Syrie








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