In May a life-changing eye clinic was held in the Samtse district in the southwestern region of Bhutan. The eye clinic was led by Bhutan’s first vitreo-retina specialist, HCP Fellow Dr. Bhim Rai. 1,300 patient screenings and 101 cataract surgeries were provided. Patients ranged in age from 17 to 100 and some were carried to the eye camps on homemade stretchers because their blindness was so debilitating.
The Himalayan Cataract Project is a critical supporter of eye care services in Bhutan. Through outreach eye clinics HCP is able to help people in destitute and rural areas that would normally not have access to high quality care.
A two-day outreach was held in May in Agroyesum, in the Ashanti region of Ghana just outside of Kumasi. The outreach was organized by long-time HCP partner, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH). Patients were screened in advance by the KATH faculty, residents and HCP international fellow, Dr. Zahra Ali. The team was joined by partners from the Moran Eye Center in Utah who make an annual visit to KATH to provide ongoing mentorship to KATH’s clinical team.
In total 50 sight-restoring cataract surgeries were provided in Agroyesum and 50 at KATH’s facility in Kumasi. The next time there is a high-volume event at KATH it will be in the eye facility that opened its doors on June 3rd. Read favorable review on the modern eye center funded by USAID, HCP and KATH from the link below.
In addition to supporting outreach events at KATH and in nearby locations, building ophthalmic capacity in Ghana is another HCP objective. There are only 50 ophthalmologists in Ghana for 23 million people. HCP is currently supporting the training of two of KATH’s faculty, Drs. Amos Aikins and Peter Armah who are receinving specialized training at the Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology in Nepal, HCP’s flagship training facility. These doctors will take their newly learned skills and bring them back to Ghana, furthering our efforts to treating curable blindness in the Himalayas and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Hetauda Community Eye Hospital (HCEH) in Nepal organized an outreach microscopic eye clinic in April. Patients were screened from five different locations, and 335 surgeries were performed. Himalayan Cataract Project Co-Directors Dr. Sanduk Ruit and Dr. Geoff Tabin, as well as Dr. Sanjita Sharma and Dr. Rachana Singh Rana from HCEH performed the surgeries.
HCEH is located in Southern Nepal and is a non-profit, sister organization of Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology, which is also supported by the Himalayan Cataract Project. Through outreach microscopic eye clinics we are able to reach people in rural areas who would normally not have the ability to travel to the hospitals for treatment. By providing these outreach clinics, HCP is able to reach the most needy patients and provide high quality care, no matter their location or ability to pay.