Cataract outreaches in India result in 925 sight restoring surgeries!
The Himalayan Cataract Project and Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology are longstanding, trusted partners whose close collaboration with other organizations is essential in carrying out effective and successful projects. HCP and Tilganga share a binding, core philosophy that they bring to collaboration with each of the partners they engage: the belief that the elimination of needless blindness is fundamentally a human right. Partners with this shared goal help HCP strengthen its mission to eliminate preventable and curable blindness.
In our most recent cataract outreaches in India, the Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology and Jagadguru Kripalu Chikitsalaya Hospital jointly organized two cataract campaigns with support from HCP and the Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) USA, from September 14-16 in Vrindavan and September 18-20 in Mangarh (Uttar Pradesh), India providing a total of 925 cataract surgeries, including four for children. The success of these outreaches can be attributed to the high quality care provided by Tilganga and Jagadguru Kripalu and financial support of SEF, USA.
Sankara Eye Foundation, USA was founded in 1998 by Mr. K. Muralidharan, Mr. K. Sridharan, and Mr. Khushnood Ahmad, whose vision was to eradicate curable blindness in India. Anil Lal has played an instrumental role for SEF, USA in developing the partnership with HCP. According to the SEF, USA website, their goal is to support, SEF, India and raise funds for surgeries as well as capital funds to build specialty eye-care hospitals across India. Their mission is to reach India’s rural and poor populations to provide quality eye care free of cost. SEF India is currently building its 9th operationally self-sufficient specialty eye care hospital with plans for further expansion in the near future.
High-volume cataract outreach at Quiha Zonal Hospital results in 1,367 sight restoring surgeries
In just five days time, an amazing team comprised of HCP Affiliated Ophthalmologists and a host of in-country personnel and volunteers performed and assisted in a total of 1,367 sight restoring cataract surgeries. In attendance was HCP Co-Founder, Dr. Geoff Tabin; New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai Professor of Ophthalmology, Dr. Sean Ianchulev; HCP International Fellow, Dr. Neda Nikpoor; and long-time HCP supporter, David Dossetter, all of whom traveled to Mekelle, Ethiopia to work with Quiha Zonal Hospital’s Head Ophthalmologist, Dr. Tilahun Kiros, for the outreach campaign from August 21-26.
The following is an update from the field as reported by Dr. Tabin:
“In Mekelle, working with our partners at Quiha Zonal Hospital, we completed [almost] 1,400 sight restoring cataract surgeries...We operated on 51 pediatric cataracts. We had several Peace Corps Volunteers helping us and it was a great overall team effort that also included lots of teaching and great improvement by a resident from Gondar University. We also had Sean Ianchulev with us for a few days who brought an array of interesting ideas, technologies and also performed several surgeries.”
Drs. Tabin and Nikpoor are currently at Arbaminch Hospital in Ethiopia with HCP Chief of Program Administration, Pam Clapp, and HCP Board Members, Dr. Adrienne Graves and Mr. Mo Siegel, for another large outreach that will last through Monday, September 4th.
HCP partner Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) and the Holy Family Hospital organized a five day cataract surgical outreach campaign in Techiman, Ghana where 232 cataract surgeries were performed. Individuals served ranged from 7 to 97 years of age.
The next HCP-supported campaign was organized by Tamale Teaching Hospital with the Mathias Catholic Hospital in Yeji, Ghana from July 9 - 14 providing 37 cataract surgeries. Yeji is a town located along the Volta River in the Atebubu District in the Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana.
With the combined efforts in Techiman and Yeji a total of 269 successful sight restoring procedures were recently performed. In the past couple years, HCP has expanded its reach in Ghana to include partnerships with the Tamale Teaching Hospital in the Northern region, the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra and Operation Eyesight Universal, a Canadian INGO also working to reduce needless blindness in Ghana.
To learn more about HCP's work in Ghana visit cureblindness.org.