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Training Families on How to Treat Children with Cerebral Palsy

Fifteen children with cerebral palsy – aged 4 years to 14 years – gathered that day in a house in the Ciganjur area, accompanied by their mothers, as well as with their fathers, and siblings. The children’s parents listened carefully to the explanation given by Elsa Roselina, a lecturer in the Vocational Education Program at the Universitas Indonesia (UI). After Elsa delivered the presentation, physiotherapy treatment was carried out by Aditya Denny Pratama (lecturer of Physiotherapy Program) and occupational therapy by Hermito Gidion (lecturer of Occupational Therapy Study Program), Dini Fajariani, and Cahya Ramadani Renhoran.

This activity is a form of community service (pengmas) carried out by lecturers of the UI Vocational Education Program. As the head of the community service, Elsa, delivered material focused on monitoring the health of cerebral palsy children during the Covid-19 pandemic. The educational materials provided include an introduction to common danger signs in children, how to identify shortness of breath in children, diarrhea and recognition of signs of dehydration in children, as well as things that should be the focus of attention when children have a fever.

Cerebral palsy is a disease that causes impairment in body movement and coordination. The disease is caused by impaired brain development, which usually occurs while the child is still in the womb. This brain development disorder can also occur during labor or the first two years after birth.

Community service activities were carried out on Sunday, December 5, 2021, carried out in a scientific integrative manner, consisting of hospital administration, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy. The goal is to improve families’ ability to care for children with cerebral palsy in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We are very grateful for the activities carried out. With this program, parents have knowledge about children’s health and therapies that must be carried out in pandemic conditions. Hopefully activities like this can continue,” said the Chairperson of the Cerebral Palsy House Community, South Jakarta, who is usually called Mama Baim. Cerebral Palsy House Community is a community organization for parents of children with cerebral palsy.

At the time of the community service, physiotherapy and occupational therapy servants treated children with cerebral palsy personally, preceded by an initial assessment of therapy needs based on the type of cerebral palsy of the child. The parents are then educated on the training or stimulus that needs to be done at home.

“Through health education activities and improving skills in training children’s motor skills, we hope that efforts to monitor the health of children with cerebral palsy conditions during this pandemic can be further improved,” said Elsa.

This post is also available in: Indonesian