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 Health  Ethiopia Project #16151

Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia

by Himalayan Cataract Project, Inc. Vetted since 2008 Site Visit Verified
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia
Outreach Eye Camps in Ethiopia

Five Recent Outreaches Result in 2,947 Sight Restoring Surgeries

In the past month, HCP partners in Ethiopia performed a total of 2,947 sight restoring surgeries! HCP is partnered with institutions across Ethiopia and the Federal Ministry of Health to provide high-quality, low-cost cataract surgery to patients who otherwise have no access to eye care services. We have worked to expand partnerships and increase outreach in a continued effort to address the backlog of cataract blindness in Ethiopia, estimated at 600,000. In the past month alone, HCP supported 5 outreach events.

Hosanna

HCP Partner and cataract surgeon, Dr. Abraham Aregay, Durame cataract surgeon Dr. Getahun, Hosanna ophthalmologist, Dr. Sara, HCP Co-Founder, Dr. Geoff Tabin and HCP Affiliated Ophthalmologist, Dr. Huck Holz led this six day outreach in Hosanna, Ethiopia in partnership with Weema International. The team provided 840 sight restoring surgeries.

Arba Minch

HCP Co-Founder, Dr. Geoff Tabin and HCP Volunteer Ophthalmologist, Dr. Erik Letko led a team from Arba Minch Hospital at this outreach, providing 1,087 sight restoring surgeries, including 7 cornea transplants.

Adama


New HCP Partners, Engage Now Africa helped support this outreach (the first of many) in the Adama region. HCP Co-Founder, Dr. Geoff Tabin led a team from the Adama General Hospital and Medical College, also a new site, during this five day outreach providing 178 sight restoring surgeries.

Mekane Selam

HCP Partner, Dr. Muluken Fantaw led a team from Boru Meda Hospital at this outreach, which was held in Mekane Selam in the Debub Wollo Zone of the Amhara Region of Ethiopia providing 632 sight restoring surgeries.

Chagni

HCP Partner, Dr. Asamere led a team from Gondar Hospital at this outreach, providing 210 sight restoring surgeries.

Outreach at Bisidimo Hospital in Eastern Ethiopia Results in 911 Sight Restoring Surgeries

In just six days time, from March 29 to April 4, an amazing team comprised of HCP Affiliated Ophthalmologists and volunteers and a host of in-country personnel performed and assisted in a total of 911 sight restoring cataract surgeries. HCP partner Dr. Mandefro Sintayehu and a team from Bisidimo Hospital were joined by Dr. Helen Sisay and a team from Jimma University; Dr. Abraham Aregay and a team from Woldiya; HCP Board Member, Dr. Matt Oliva and his family; and HCP International Fellow, Dr. Neda Nikpoor.

During this outreach HCP Ethiopia Representative Dr. Liknaw Adamu and Dr. Matt Oliva counted a total of 92 bilaterally blind patients, highlighting the need to continue to strengthen in-country infrastructure, reach the unreached, and train more personnel in this region in order to reduce the backlog of cataract blindness in Ethiopia.

  

Dr. Sadik Taju
Dr. Sadik Taju

HCP Recognizes the Contributions of Pediatric Ophthalmology Specialist and Head of Pediatrics at Menelik II Referral Hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - Dr. Sadik Taju.

HCP began working with Dr. Sadik Taju in 2012 when he assumed a joint position at Ayder Hospital and Quiha Zonal Hospital in Mekelle, Ethiopia. A year later, Dr. Sadik organized a month-long outreach program at Quiha Zonal Hospital, where he and his team performed over 2,000 surgeries in just four weeks. In January of 2015, Dr. Sadik started a full year-long surgical fellowship in pediatrics at the Sick Kids Children’s Hospital Toronto, Canada. After successful completion of the program, Dr. Sadik was recognized as the first pediatric ophthalmologist in Ethiopia with a full surgical fellowship. He is now head of Pediatric Ophthalmology at Menelik II Referral Hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

In September of 2016, Dr. Sadik began leading the HCP project: Improving Pediatric Eye Health in Ethiopia - supported by a grant through the USAID Child Blindness Program. The continued aim of this project is to build the capacity of Menelik II’s pediatric ophthalmology staff in order to ensure both the provision of high quality care as well as essential personnel capable of training the next generation of pediatric ophthalmologists in Ethiopia.

Dr. Sadik continues to lead HCP’s pediatric efforts in Ethiopia and champions its successes - seeing the emergence of a superior eye care system for children within the country.

"When I was in Toronto for my fellowship, my mentor told me something that I think of all the time. She said it wasn't that long ago that Canada also suffered from a lack of eye care systems. So I see that for Ethiopis and I can see a future in my lifetime where this is possible. It is why I came back to Ethiopia, because I knew my country and its children needed me. With HCP's support, we are one step closer." - Dr. Sadik Taju Sherief

 

Happy patients after patches are removed
Happy patients after patches are removed

High-volume cataract outreach at Woldiya Hospital results in 953 sight restoring surgeries

In just five days time, a team comprised of HCP Affiliated Ophthalmologists, in-country personnel, HCP staff and volunteers performed and assisted in a total of 953 sight restoring cataract surgeries. In attendance was HCP Board Member, Dr. Matt Oliva; Wake Forest University Associate Professor and Ophthalmologist, Dr. Matthew Giegengack; Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology's Head of Glaucoma Clinic & Research Department, Dr. Suman Thapa; and Emory Eye Center's Global Ophthalmology Fellow, Fran Wu, all of whom traveled to Woldiya, Ethiopia to work with Woldiya Hospital Cataract Surgeon, Dr. Abraham Aregay, for the outreach campaign from October 9-15.

 

The following are a few patient stories captured at this outreach:

Desale, 15 year old boy: This young man said he had been blind in his right eye as long as he can remember. He was unable to stay in school, was ridiculed for his blindness by bullies and has not attended class for years. He lives in Woldiya with his family and generally stays at home with his mother as she cooks and cleans. He is a quiet and sweet boy, who was brave and fearless as he entered the operating room and then quietly waited for his turn on the operating table. When his patch was taken off the next day, he quietly scanned the room with a look of astonishment on his face. After awhile he began to smile and started chatting, the most we had seen him do in the two days spent together at the outreach. He said he is most excited to go back to school and stated that he wants to be a teacher. When he becomes a teacher, he hopes to help kids who were like him and protect them from bullies.

40 year old farmer: This man was brought by his brother in-law, who had a cataract in his right eye removed at our June outreach in Arba Minch. He had not had vision in his left eye and was only able to see partially out of his right before arriving from Wichale, about 61 km away. He lives there with his wife and 8 children and farms wheat, corn and beans. After his patches were removed he said he is most happy that his four children, who have been helping on the farm, can now go back to school. They did not go to school because they had to help make a living for their family. After speaking with us he called his family and you could hear cries of joy and excitement from the receiver.

Mother with baby: This mother of eight came to the outreach with her youngest child and husband. As she waited patiently to have her patches removed, Dr. Matt Oliva noticed an eye infection in her almost 2-year-old daughter. With a quick call for eye drops to clear up a case of conjunctivitis, the baby's eye was cleared up by the afternoon. This mother said she is eager to get back to her children and work her cattle once again.

Whelai, 12 year old boy: This young boy came with his father and had a cataract in his left eye. He never looked up the entire time he was at the hospital and was very shy. He had his cataract for 2 years and was unable to go to school because of it. His father is a cattle farmer and his days were mostly spent sitting in a field waiting for his father to finish herding. He said he is most looking forward to going back to school and making friends, and he now wants to be a doctor when he grows up.

Martha, 67 year old woman: Martha came with her son and had been blind from cataracts for about 2 years. She said the hardest part of being blind was having to rely on someone for everything. She said, "When I was blind I just ate food people put in my hands without even knowing what it was. Now I can eat my favorite foods and choose them myself. You {HCP} took me out of the darkness and now I am alright! I can go back to church all by myself and thank God for giving me sight back."

Desale waiting for surgery
Desale waiting for surgery
Desale after surgery, his sight restored
Desale after surgery, his sight restored
40 year old farmer, with his sight restored
40 year old farmer, with his sight restored
Mother with baby
Mother with baby
Whelai after his patches were removed
Whelai after his patches were removed
Martha
Martha
Patients waiting to have patches removed
Patients waiting to have patches removed

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.

Patient undergoing cataract surgery
Patient undergoing cataract surgery
Joy after sight restoration
Joy after sight restoration
 

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Organization Information

Himalayan Cataract Project, Inc.

Location: Waterbury, VT - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.cureblindness.org
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @Himalayan Cataract Project
Project Leader:
Tai Nixa Peterson
Deputy Director of Operations
Waterbury, VT United States

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