A working group hybrid meeting of the ERASMUS+ project entitled SCR4Cleft, has taken place on the 16 and 17 December 2021 at the University of Malta Valletta Campus. This was hosted by the Maltese partners, Prof Helen Grech from the Department of Communication Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences,and Prof Jean Calleja-Agius from the Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery. This meeting was led by Gareth Davies, who is the Executive Director of the international NGO, the European Cleft Palate Organisation (ECO).
Fifteen participants attended from the nine partner countries. This ERASMUS+ project brings together specialists in obstetrics, anatomy, speech therapy, psychology, dentists, orthodontists, and paediatric surgeons in order to enhance the research related to cleft lip and palate.
Approximately 900,000 children, adults and their families are affected by these specific types of congential anomalies across Europe. However, the provision of care for children with cleft lip and/or palate, and their families, varies markedly across Europe. The ‘gold standard’ of multidisciplinary care is available only to a small minority. Parental need for information and advice about how to identify early warning signs of challenges and address the difficulties, is acute.
The aim of this ERASMUS+ project is to develop a pedagogical handbook and a training module for parents and for healthcare professionals involved in the care of children with cleft lip.