“Life changing” cleft lip surgery for little girl


Little Annfredda Larry was born in Papua New Guinea (PNG) with a cleft lip.

If left untreated, cleft lip can affect feeding in infants, a child’s speech and if severe, can also affect breathing.

In Australia, this would be treated in infancy but in countries like PNG, there are limited health services, particularly in remote areas.

Now, thanks to the Children First Foundation and the No Roads Foundation, Annfredda has been successfully treated at Northpark Private Hospital in Victoria.

Earlier this year, Annfredda and her mother Viola were brought from PNG, with the 20-month-old girl undergoing an operation.

Plastic and maxillofacial surgeon, Dr David Chong, and anaesthetist Dr Ben Hallet generously agreed to treat Annfredda on a pro bono basis.

“I’m really excited to be involved in Annfredda’s surgery,” Dr Chong said.

“We are so blessed in Australia to have a wonderful health system and I’m grateful for the support of Healthscope to be able to care for those who have no access to care.

“The surgery we perform takes about 90 minutes, but will change her life – that’s a good reason to smile.”

Northpark Private Hospital general manager, Petra Snelleman, said the hospital was proud to support the reconstructive surgery.

“We are pleased to offer Northpark’s hospital services to support Dr Chong’s work,” she said.

“We know Annfredda is in experienced and caring hands with David and our nursing team and we wish her well in her recovery.”

The Children’s First Foundation also recently organised care for 15-month-old Bhutanese conjoined twins, Nima and Dawn, who were separated at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital.



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