Our Work in Myanmar

An overburdened healthcare system lacking cleft professionals puts children born with cleft at risk of being left behind. We're working to change that.

Today, Pwint is 12 years old and she will soon start orthodontic treatment.

Cleft Care in Myanmar Today

The barriers to timely comprehensive care in Myanmar are many and mounting every day. A shortage of cleft care specialists means that children and families must travel long distances to access care, a situation that has been exacerbated by the current conflict and its enormous impact on the public healthcare system. It is speculated that domestic rates of poverty have risen to 40% due to the conflict.

Families residing in communities near the border are obliged to travel to Thailand to access safe cleft surgical care. Between 2020-2023, a border closure limited families from accessing in-person services. Transforming Faces partnered to develop unique ways for families to access care closer to home, though a backlog of children waiting for treatment continues.

Fast Facts

  • Population: 54,179,000
  • Capital: Yangon
  • Below Poverty Line: 40% est.
  • Cleft Incidence: 1,880+/year

Key Challenges

  • Key-Challenge-Transportation

    Transportation Assistance

    A major shortage of cleft providers in Myanmar means that families affected by cleft must travel across country or even across borders into Thailand for care

  • Key-Challenge-Speech-Therapy

    Speech Therapy

    There are currently no formally trained speech therapists where we work. Our partner currently relies upon virtual care and local speech assistants to bridge this gap.

  • Community Engagement

    Community Engagement

    Lack of cleft care infrastructure and low community awareness present challenges for delivering timely care close to families’ homes

Program Successes


Treatments spanning the circle of care provided for children and families this year


Families reporting satisfaction with their child’s self-confidence and well-being thanks to our partner’s support


Local volunteers helping to ensure children access follow-up care during this conflict period

“In remote areas of Myanmar, local health volunteers help us to reach patients who arrive in the program as newborns and are underweight. They deliver supplementary food like formula milk, so the patients achieve their desired weight in preparation for surgery.“

- Myanmar Project Leader

Stories from Myanmar

Our Partners in Cleft Care

TF has been supporting partners in Myanmar since 2017.

Our Partnerships in Myanmar

  • Local Collaboration, Myanmar
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