On 27th-28th October, 2012, at the Plastic and Craniofacial Surgery Unit of University Hospital “St.George” was conducted a training for medical specialists on “First care and feeding of newborns with facial anomalies”. 17 midwives and nurses from some of the big hospitals in the country (Burgas, Varna, Veliko Tarnovo, Vratsa, Pazardzhik, Plovdiv, Pleven, Razlog, Rousse, Sliven, Sofia, Stara Zagora, Haskovo) took part in it. The head nurse of the University Hospital – Evelina Bozhinova who supported the initiative of the Association, also participated in the course.
The training continued for two days and it included a theoretical and a practical part. Lecturers were Kostadinka Bozhikova and Sevdzhikhan Eubova, nurses with a long standing experience in feeding and taking care of children with facial anomalies. They have passed a three-month training course in Nottingham, England. A presentation was also made by Emma Southby, a specialised nurse in cares for patients with clefts in London, England. She presented some good practices from her work and organised a discussion about the necessity of creating a network of trained nurses and midwives on the territory of Bulgaria. A model protocol for evaluation of feeding was also discussed. As part of the practical part of the course, the participants were shown a demonstration and feeding evaluation of three babies with a cleft palate. Two of the babies had a slight form of Pierre Robin Sequence (PRS).
This course, organised by ALA Association with the financial support of ECO, has been conducted for the fourth consecutive time and it aims to increase the knowledge and the practical skills of the medical specialists and midwives for first care of children with facial anomalies. A start for establishing a network of medical specialists in the country who would give first care, psych emotional support and help in feeding children with facial anomalies and their families has been set up. Practical coordinator is the head nurse in the Unit – Nelly Hashova. Experts and general consultants are Kostadinka Bozhikova and Sevdzhikhan Eubova. Specialist with a long standing experience in feeding and speech therapy is Nina Yordanova from Therapeutical and teaching centre ‘Pumpelina’.