Pediatric Plastic Surgery

Frankino Cleft Resource Library

On Tuesday, December 17, 2013, the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital became the site of an innovative patient and family resource: The Samuel and Connie Frankino Cleft Resource Library. The library is located on the first floor of the Mailman Center for Child Development next to the location of our Interdisciplinary South Florida Cleft Clinic.

The origins of the clinic date from 1951 with a team of specialists interested in assisting cleft children and their families. This was the product of a study course conducted under the auspices of the Dade County Dental Research Clinic. This initial collection of dental practitioners then invited other health care specialists from speech, plastic surgery, and other areas to serve as a discussion group to review management of this congenital anomaly. Within a short interval, the clinic was developed to provide an interdisciplinary team to provide comprehensive diagnosis and management of cleft children. These members volunteered their time and set up the clinic at Variety Children’s Hospital. In 1954, the Soroptimist Club of Coral Gables, a service club initiated a project to assist in financing the clinic and continued this for about 7 years. In 1959, the clinic was incorporated under the Florida statutes with a Board of Directors composed of interested community leaders.

Eventually with the closure of Variety Children’s Hospital, the clinic was transitioned to the Mailman Center on the UM/JMH campus where it remains settled. Upon his appointment in 1963, the clinic thrived under the directorship of Dr. D. Ralph Millard. Under Dr. Millard’s stewardship, there were many innovative contributions to the field. In 1995, the clinic was placed under the directorship of Dr. Ron Haun from the UM Department of Pediatric and the Division of Genetics. Dr. Haun nurtured the clinic which continued to expand until his untimely death on March 1, 2000. Following this, a variety of pediatricians have taken the helm and fostered our clinic through challenging times. In spite, the clinic has survived and flourished under the current leadership of Dr. Stephanie Sacharow.
Our clinic has remained focused towards providing a friendly, courteous, professional atmosphere by addressing the concerns of each individual patient and family and develop comprehensive treatment plans that lead to optimal physiologic timing for growth and development, and associated psyhco-social concerns. Our mission remains steadfast: to enhance the patient’s life and provide support and guidance for both patient’s and their families who are involved in the management of individuals with clefts.

To further our educational resources and to continue to empower patients and family we have embarked on annual fundraising events. These have included: 5 K Miles for Smiles and Spreading Smiles luncheon and Silent Auction. This was culminated with our first annual Dr. Ron Haun Lectureship which was given by Dr. Ian Jackson and the building and naming of the Samuel and Connie Frankino Foundation Cleft Resource Library. Dr. Jackson and his wife Margie gave their personal recollections of raising a son with physical deformities. The later resulted in our library which will provide educational resources for our patients and families.