80 families mark World Clubfoot Day at Museo Pambata in Manila

Over 80 families with children who are undergoing treatment and have been treated for clubfoot marked World Clubfoot Day with fun games and activities at Museo Pambata in Ermita, Manila on Saturday, June 8.

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Children born with clubfoot take their first steps with Medical Corps member Capt. Michael Shaun Ritualo, who was also born with clubfoot, at the Museo Pambata in Manila on Saturday, June 8, 2024, to raise awareness about clubfoot birth defects. The event was in commemoration of the World Clubfoot Day celebrated annually on June 3. The event was organized by the Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health and Welfare (PNGOC), MiracleFeet US and the Philippine National Clubfoot Program. (Photos from Arnold Quizol/MANILA BULLETIN)



The event was launched by the Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health, and Welfare (PNGOC) in partnership with Museo Pambata and MiracleFeet US, which facilitated the treatment of clubfoot in the country.

During the program, parents and their children engaged in various activities and games they enjoyed.

The activities included harvesting beeswax from honeycombs, playtime, storytelling, and headdress making, among others.



Parents and their kids who are undergoing treatment and those who have been treated for clubfoot enjoy various activities to celebrate World Clubfoot Day at Museo Pambata in Ermita, Manila on Saturday, June 8. (Photos from Richielyn Canlas/MANILA BULLETIN) 

The event also honored the birthday of Dr. Ignacio Ponseti who developed the Ponseti method for the treatment of clubfoot.

PNGOC stated that clubfoot is one of the most common birth defects and a major cause of physical disability globally, affecting more than 2,700 children in the country.

Clubfoot is correctable with the Ponseti method, a non-surgical treatment that involves gentle manipulation of the feet and the application of plaster casts and temporary bracing.

“There is one Filipino baby born with clubfoot every three hours, but our data shows that 70 percent of children with clubfoot remain untreated even though it can be corrected,” said PNGOC Executive Director Chi Laigo Vallido.

“But treatment of clubfoot is time-sensitive, and early diagnosis is advisable so that a health provider trained in the Ponseti method can assess the case and suggest a treatment plan. The success of the treatment depends on the commitment of the families. Maintenance using special shoes and braces can take up to five years. However, when initiated during infancy, clubfoot is usually corrected within six to eight weeks,” Vallido added.

According to MiracleFeet, there are 9.8 million people alive today who were born with clubfoot, and of those, 7.8 million live with disabilities due to a lack of access to proper treatment.

It stated that with proper treatment, more than 95 percent can achieve full correction and mobility. 

Without treatment, people with clubfoot will grow up with disabilities for the rest of their lives, will be unable to wear normal footwear, and will experience restricted movements that impact their quality of life.


Photos from Richielyn Canlas/MANILA BULLETIN